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November 11, 2011

North American Summit Cancelled Due to Mexico's Absence

The North American Leaders' Summit to be held in Hawaii Sunday has been cancelled due to the death of a Mexican minister.

Mexico's President Felipe Calderon was set to hold talks with U.S. President Barack Obama and Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper during the two-day meeting of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation in Honolulu.

But Mr. Calderon cancelled after a helicopter crash Friday killed Interior Minister Francisco Blake Mora and other Mexican government officials.

The three leaders were scheduled to discuss North American competitiveness, including spurring job creation, greater trilateral regulatory co-operation, and energy efficiency and climate change.

The cancellation of the North American summit could leave the Canadian leader without an opportunity to meet with President Obama on bilateral issues.

One of them is the U.S. government's decision to delay a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, intended to carry oil  from northern Alberta in Canada to refineries on the Gulf Coast of Texas.  the project has been criticized by U.S. environmentalists.

Canada and the U.S. are also looking to finalize the Beyond the Border initiative, a bilateral trade and security agreement designed to boost intelligence-sharing and prevent cross-border crime.

President Calderon and his wife were among the government officials who attended Mora's public funeral in Mexico City Saturday afternoon.