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Minister Flaherty and Minister Lunn confirm use of accreditation card for Pan American Games for Toronto 2015 bid.

On August 28, 2009, The Honorable Jim Flaherty, Minster of Finance, and the Honorable Gary Lunn, Minister of State (Sport), announced that the Government of Canada would be granting all Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) nations (admissible athletes, coaches and officials) access to Canada using their PASO identity card during their visit to Toronto in 2015.

"Our government's commitment to Toronto's bid remains strong and we're thrilled to assist in making the athlete experience as seamless as possible," said Minister Flaherty. "Having the PASO identity cards function as travel visas facilitates access to Canada and promotes a great Games experience for all Pan Am participants."

"Our Government looks forward to welcoming the finest athletes in the Americas to Toronto and the Greater Golden Horseshoe in 2015, and we are working with all of our partners to ensure that these will be the greatest Pan American and Parapan American Games ever," said Minister of State Lunn. "This decision reinforces our commitment to assist in making this bid a complete success and I am eager to do my part to help bring these Games back to Canada."

The federal government has given the Toronto 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games bid a guarantee that the Pan American identity card will work as a visa when presented with a valid passport. All associated visa fees are exempted for all Pan Am participants. Participants must apply for the card and meet Canada's immigration requirements, including security screening. The cost for this will be covered by a portion of the federal government's $500 million commitment towards the Games.

*Source: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/releases/2009/2009-08-28.asp

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