Richard Branson says Justin Trudeau is ‘a breath of fresh air in Canada’
Richard Branson has written a lengthy post for his personal blog on Virgin.com about his love of Canada. The reason for his overwhelming affection? Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. In the article, posted Wednesday, the entrepreneur highlighted his first impressions of the 44-year-old.
“I was fortunate enough to meet Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently,” he wrote. “Seeing a young, exciting prime minister and his colleagues in action was a breath of fresh air.”
He went on to commend the father of three on his recent appearance at Davos. “Where too many people focus on the negatives, he was optimistic on topics ranging from drug policy to climate change to diversity. On the latter, he said: ‘Diversity isn’t just sound social policy. Diversity is the engine of invention. It generates creativity that helps change the world. We know this in Canada.'”
He also applauded the prime minister for his approach to gender equality in parliament, pledge to legalize and regulate recreational marijuana and goals to help the country’s at-risk youth.
To the last point, the 65-year-old even offered some advice: “[My company] is investing in helping youth gain skills to get jobs as well as support to live a prosperous and healthy life. I would also encourage Canada to look at programmes such as start-up loans to help create even more opportunities for young people.”
This isn’t the first time Trudeau has garnered positive praise from world leaders, celebrities or media outlets. He recently appeared in the pages of Vogue with his wife, Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau, and got a thumbs up from U.S. President Barack Obama because of his stance on climate change. Trudeau even made Queen Elizabeth II chuckle during a recent visit to Buckingham Palace.
Branson says he’s looking forward to fostering a stronger relationship with the prime minister.
“I have always loved visiting Canada and meeting its wonderful people… It is great to see such a large country going in the right direction,” he wrote. He wrapped up the blog by saying: “I’m looking forward to more visits to Canada, more business opportunities and more progressive policies from its government in 2016 and beyond.”
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