Canada continues to reap success in bringing its world-class financial services to Southeast Asia , said Canadian Minister of International Trade Ed Fast.

Ed Fast has made the statement at meetings on the sideline of the 45th ASEAN Economic Ministers Meeting in Bandar Seri Begawan , Brunei .

He said the launch of Sun Life Financial and Insurance Group’s new branch in Malaysia is the clearest demonstration of Canadian financial services sector’s successes in ASEAN region – a priority market under the plan to promote trade of the Canadian government.

Canadian businesses operating in the field of financial service have many opportunities to develop in the region as more than one billion people there are expected to enter the middle class in the coming years, said the Minister.

He affirmed that the Canadian Government will continue to further support its companies that are active in or are seeking business opportunity in the market as business expansion and success at foreign markets contribute to the country’s economic growth and create more jobs to Canadian people.

Sun Life Financial has operations in 7 Asian countries, including Vietnam .

The financial service sector, which includes banks, insurance companies and asset management firms, is the largest subsector of Canada ’s services economy. Over the last five years, Canadian financial and insurance services exports have increased by over 60 percent, reaching 8.1 billion USD in 2012.

The country’s insurance companies are active in more than 20 countries over the world.-VNA