Prime Minister Stephen Harper will try to put the focus on Canada as a global player when he heads to New York City Tuesday, with meetings on Libya, the economy and maternal and children's health.
All three are issues in which Canada has played a big role, whether by hosting the G8 meeting in which Harper announced maternal and child health would be a focus, or sending a 650-strong contingent to support a NATO mission in Libya.
"Canada continues to play a leading role on the world stage – from improving the health of women and children in developing countries, to assisting the Libyan people in their transition to democracy, to demonstrating fiscal leadership and strong fundamentals in tough economic times," Harper said in a statement Monday.
Harper will be going to the UN for meetings on Libya and an Every Woman, Every Child event hosted by the Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, but it will be Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird who addresses the UN General Assembly the evening of Sept. 26.
Countries supporting Libya will meet Tuesday morning with the country's National Transitional Council, three weeks after a high-level meeting in Paris. It was at the Paris meeting that the Friends of Libya offered help to the NTC, Libya's interim government, on rebuilding the country and establishing democracy.
It's not expected Canada will offer anything specific at Tuesday's meeting, with the NTC having had only a few weeks to consider what the country needs.
Harper is expected to announce Tuesday which aid agencies will get $75 million of Canadian International Development Agency funding for maternal and child health. The government has pledged a total of $2.85 billion between 2010 and 2015, including $1.1 billion announced at last year's G8 Muskoka summit.
The government announced last May more than $200 million in funding for UN agencies working in Africa and Afghanistan, but Canadian aid agencies have been waiting since a November 2010 call for proposals to find out which of their projects will get government funding.
Harper co-chairs a global committee on ensuring accountability in aid delivery, which released a report in May about making sure pledges are honoured and resources are spent in the most effective way to save lives, a release from the group says.
Harper will also meet with business leaders at a roundtable hosted by the New York Stock Exchange where they'll discuss the economy and Canada-U.S. business relations.