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07/03/2012 | 05:41pm CEST

Québec, Quebec, July 2, 2012  - Québec City's residents and visitors will have an opportunity to experience the excitement of one of the largest outdoor cultural events in the country, which contributes to job creation and the region's economic growth. The Harper Government's support for the Festival d'été de Québecwas reaffirmed today by the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Member of Parliament (Lévis-Bellechasse).

As part of the Festival's 45th edition, nearly 300 shows will take place from July 5 to 15, 2012, featuring performances by 1000 artists from Canada and beyond. Once again this year, around 1.5 million spectators are expected to attend.

"Our Government received a strong mandate from Canadians to invest in important cultural events like the Festival d'été de Québec," said the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages. "By supporting these major celebrations, our Government is delivering on its commitment to strengthen our economy and support our arts and culture."

"The Harper Government has chosen to support the Festival d'été de Québecin 2011 and 2012 because it generates major economic benefits for the Québec City region," said the Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec. "Since its creation in 1968, this ever-expanding musical event has had an important place in the cultural landscape of Quebec and of Canada."

"I am proud that our Government is supporting the Festival d'été de Québec," said Minister Blaney. "This event is a definite source of pride for everyone in the Québec City region, many of whom attend it year after year."

"Overall, the federal government's contribution to the Festival d'été de Québecallows the event to increase its visibility in foreign markets and to enrich the local community," said Nancy Savard, Chair of the Board of the Festival d'été de Québec. "Through its action, Canadian Heritage is ensuring that the Festival can offer the greatest number of people increased access to culture, whether it is Canadian talent, street performances, or music from around the world. This contribution is very much appreciated."

On April 12, 2012, the Harper Government allocated funding of $1.1 million for the 2012 and 2013 editions of this event through the Canada Arts Presentation Fund. This program of the Department of Canadian Heritage gives Canadians increased access to the variety and richness of Canada's culture through professional arts festivals, presentations of live professional performances, and other artistic experiences.

On July 15, 2011, Canada Economic Development provided $1 million in non-repayable funding that will serve primarily to promote the Festival in international markets in 2011 and 2012. This funding, provided through Canada Economic Development's Community Diversification program, will help raise the event's profile on the world stage. Targeted advertising campaigns will also reinforce Québec City's reputation as a festive city and world-class tourist destination.

- 30 -

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