In 1967, Canada's Centennial year, B.C.'s flag was described by the Secretary of State* as follows;
"On June 20th, 1871, British Columbia became the sixth province of the Dominion of Canada. The display of the provincial flag was authorized by Order in Council dated June 20th, 1660. The Union Jack is symbolic of British Columbia's origin as a British colony and of its continued links with the United Kingdom. The crown in the center of the Union Jack represents the sovereign power which links, in free association, the British Commonwealth of Nations.
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"The sun setting over the Pacific Ocean is symbolic of British Columbia's position as the most westerly province of Canada. Proportion is 5 units wide by 3 units deep."
In the thirty years since, much has changed. British Columbia's beginnings (indeed Canada's beginnings) as a colony of Great Britain are mostly ignored and often forgotten. The British Commonwealth has become the Commonwealth of Nations with Britain merely the "first among equals".
But perhaps the largest change over the last thirty years has been B.C.'s emergence as Canada's gateway to the Pacific and the changes brought about by increased contact with the Asian countries around the Pacific Rim. The United States remains our largest trading partner (as we are their's) but trade between Canada and the Pacific Rim countries now far outstrips our trade with Great Britain and Europe. The United States remains as the dominant force in trade and cultural influence, but, especially in Vancouver, the Asian nations are the next strongest force. Our future will be largely shaped by these factors.
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