Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives to meet with Prime Minister of France Edouard Philippe in Paris, France on Tuesday, April 17, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Trudeau capping French visit with National Assembly speech

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau capping French visit with National Assembly speech, then heads to U.K.

Justin Trudeau is hailing both Canada and France as champions of inclusion, environmental protection and sustainable economic growth as the first Canadian prime minister to address the French National Assembly.

Trudeau’s speech also touches on what has become a common theme: battling the rise of nationalism, populism and xenophobia, which have become serious concerns in France and other parts of Europe.

He’s also cheering France’s efforts to pursue gender parity in government, a comment that earned a standing ovation from the women in the assembly, as well as a relative handful of the men.

Related: Justin Trudeau defends peacekeeping mission with French president

On Monday, Canada and France pledged to renew the fight against climate change, hoping to keep momentum on the world stage going after U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew his country from the Paris climate agreement.

A new France-Canada partnership that includes pushing for a global price on carbon falls in line with the Trudeau government’s priorities for the G7 Summit in Quebec in June.

Officials say the government is also hoping the partnership will convince the French that Canada is serious about fighting climate change — and as a result help with ratification of the new Canada-EU free trade deal.

There have been concerns in France that investor-protection clauses within the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement, or CETA as the deal is known, would lead to weakened environmental rules.

Later today, the prime minister is flying to London to meet with British counterpart Theresa May and Queen Elizabeth.

Related: Trans Mountain ‘will be built,’ Trudeau says after meeting with Horgan, Notley

The Canadian Press

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