press release: Sign up for our Election Dispatch newsletter for a daily update on the campaign, once the federal election is underway In the new position he will have a direct line to Trudeau and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, and will be the face and voice of Canada in China, according to CTV. Barton will provide strategic guidance, to Trudeau, said the Prime Minister's Office in a press release announcing his pick to fill a role that has been vacant for months amid still strained diplomatic relations. Barton, a prominent Canadian figure on international economic matters, has advised Trudeau's cabinet, and previously chaired the Liberal government's Advisory Council on Economic Growth. Canada has been without an ambassador since January when Trudeau asked former Liberal cabinet minister John McCallum to resign after coming under fire for twice commenting publicly and not in line with the government's position, on Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou's legal case, after her arrest in Vancouver in December. Trade tensions have also been strained, with China blocking Canada's canola exports to the country and increasing its inspections of Canadian meat products. Canada and China have been locked in a diplomatic dispute since her arrest on an extradition request from the United States, which was followed soon after by China detaining Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. (www.immigrantscanada.com). As reported in the news.