Stephen Harper's official statement on Barack Obama's re-election as President of the United States of America
Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on President Barack Obama's re-election as President of the United States of America:
"On behalf of the Government of Canada, I would like to congratulate President Barack Obama on his victory in tonight's election and on being re-elected by the American people for a second term.
"Canada and the United States enjoy one of the closest and most extensive relationships in the world.
"Over the last four years, the President and I have worked on several important bilateral initiatives to generate jobs and growth in both our countries. This includes the Beyond the Border Action Plan, which will speed up trade and travel across our borders while also enhancing security.
We are also working together with other partners to conclude the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, which seeks to boost trade in the Asia-Pacific region.
"I look forward to working with the Obama Administration over the next four years to continue finding ways to increase trade and investment flows between our countries. This includes putting in place the transportation and security infrastructure necessary to take bilateral commercial relations to new heights and reducing red tape so companies on both sides of the border can create more jobs."
"I also look forward to continuing to work with President Obama on pressing global economic issues as well as on security challenges, such as those in Iran and Syria.
"I would also like to congratulate all incoming and re-elected Members of Congress and Governors. Close cooperation between our two countries will be essential as we seek to create jobs, growth and long-term prosperity over the coming months and years."
Reaction in India
Billionaire industrialist Adi Godrej, managing director of the Godrej Group, articulated the dominant theme in the business community when he said that a second Obama term was likely the best outcome for India. "The continuity will be good for India and we really hope that now in the next two months Obama is able to overcome the financial drift. And if that is done I think the U.S. economy will recover strongly and that will help India also," he said after an appearance at the World Economic Forum meeting underway in Gurgaon.
The chief economic concern in India is outsourcing, and the health of the vital back-office service industry, worth billions of dollars to the Indian economy; both candidates had talked a tough line about ending the off-shoring of American jobs. There is a sense in India that Mr. Obama understands the many ways in which the two economies are connected and that nothing much will change in the outsourcing industry.
The political establishment is also happy to continue dealing with Mr. Obama, who is a known quantity and who has identified the relationship with India as a priority for the U.S. His government's tough handling of Pakistan, and its support of Islamist militants in the region, is popular in New Delhi.
Vikas Sharma, who runs a small repair shop in a blue-collar neighbourhood of Delhi, said it was "all same-same" for India, whomever won - that he did not see U.S. policy on South Asia changing much under a Republican or Democratic administration. Then he added, "But Obama - he seems like a good person. I'm glad it's him."
Indian-American voters once again seem to have voted largely for Mr. Obama, despite their traditional reputation as Republican voters.
- Stephanie Nolen
China's official Xinhua newswire also released an editorial amid the voting in the U.S.
The editorial opens with a hope that the "China-bashing" that has occurred throughout the presidential campaign will end with the next president.
"As the U.S. presidential candidates enter into the final stretch of their months-long campaigns, Election Day, which falls on Tuesday local time, will not only end with the announcement of who will be the next U.S. president, but also, hopefully, with a pause in the China-bashing game."