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David Plunkett appointed as ambassador to EU

David Plunkett arrives at a Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in Big Sky, Montana May 20, 2011.

REUTERS/Rick Wilking/REUTERS/Rick Wilking

If you needed proof that Ottawa's top priority in Europe is to close a free-trade deal, here it is: Canada's chief trade negotiator, David Plunkett, has been appointed as ambassador to the European Union.

Mr. Plunkett, till now the head of the detail-minded, poker-faced team of Canadian trade negotiators, held the rank of assistant deputy minister in Ottawa, and has in the past served in senior economic posts in two of the most important postings in the foreign service, in London and Washington. Canada is hoping to close a deal on a free-trade agreement with the EU by the end of the year.

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