Tear down Canada’s interprovincial trade walls

The annual national price tag for maintaining internal barriers may top $130 billion

Tear down Canada’s interprovincial trade wallsInterprovincial free trade, the lowest hanging fruit on the tree of Canadian economic policy, never fails to raise the federal government’s thirst for marvellously empty rhetoric, especially during the toastmaster circuit of every election cycle. So it was earlier this year when New Brunswick’s very own Dominic LeBlanc – minister of Intergovernmental and Northern Affairs…

Canadian natural resource sector economic activity on the rise

The mineral and mining subsector drove the increase, led by potash

Canadian natural resource sector economic activity on the riseThe natural resource sector, including energy, saw the volume of economic activity grow in the third quarter of 2018, according to Statistics Canada. The federal agency reported Thursday that real gross domestic product in the natural resource sector rose by one per cent in the quarter following a 1.4 per cent increase in the second…

New coalition seeks to create a compelling LNG narrative for Canada

The group is hosting a session on Jan. 15 in Calgary to gauge interest. So far, nearly two dozen organizations plan to attend

New coalition seeks to create a compelling LNG narrative for CanadaCanada's oil and gas industry long ago lost control over the narratives that shaped the worldview of its oil sands sector. Sadly, that perspective includes much of Canada. The sector is constantly reacting to competing narratives expertly controlled by outside forces much more proficient at storytelling than we’ve been. As a result, Canada's global reputation as…

Time to rethink the federal transfers system

Atlantic Canada enjoys a level of public spending that far outreaches that of the provinces that contribute most to equalization payments

Time to rethink the federal transfers systemIt is time for a fundamental course change by Atlantic Canadians with respect to equalization and other regional subsidies. I recently made a presentation to independent senators in Ottawa on this subject in which I said that Canada’s regional subsidies were ineffective. We've had a half-century of remarkably large subsidies to Quebec and Atlantic Canada,…

Bad public policy chokes out economic growth

Nova Scotia's continued ban on fracking isn't supported by evidence. And it has severely curtailed spending and job creation

Bad public policy chokes out economic growthWith an estimated 1.6-plus-trillion cubic feet of natural gas under foot, Nova Scotian policy-makers are choking out economic growth potential with bad public policy. Their hasty decisions regarding the not-so-new technology of hydraulic fracturing (or fracking, which has been around since the 1950s) were justified by claiming to have been based on incomplete, unavailable or…

School choice a good first step to quality education in Atlantic Canada

Adopting the Alberta charter school model would give parents and children more choice and allow them to enjoy the benefits of competition

School choice a good first step to quality education in Atlantic CanadaCanadians experience the enormous economic benefits of competition daily. For most consumer goods, over time, Canadians pay less and get more. Businesses compete to offer customers the best products at the lowest prices; those with offerings that consumers judge unsatisfactory are eventually forced to go out of business. As long as there’s competition, consumers are…

Nova Scotia increases health system complexity at the cost of actual care

Strangely, the health authority seems to believe that increasing the administrative burden on clinicians won’t decrease care

Nova Scotia increases health system complexity at the cost of actual careThe latest missive from the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) – sent to some doctors but not to the community at large – acknowledges the responsibility of the health authority for the sad state of primary care. In an April Department of Family Practice Update we see a development that imposes a costly and inefficient…

The fractured thinking behind Nova Scotia’s fracking ban

The ban on hydraulic fracturing defies science that says the practice is safe. And it means turning away from billions in profits

The fractured thinking behind Nova Scotia’s fracking banNova Scotia's wrong-headed ban on fracking denies the province a golden economic opportunity. Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is used to extract oil and gas from deep underground rock formations. Fluid is injected into formations with enough pressure to fracture the oil-and-gas-bearing rock. The Nova Scotia Energy Department has been told that the province sits on…

Atlantic Canada should abandon government liquor monopolies

It’s time to focus on preserving public safety while permitting a market system to thrive through the entire supply chain, from producer to consumer

Atlantic Canada should abandon government liquor monopoliesBy Alex Whalen and Ian Madsen Contributors In October 2012, Gerard Comeau left his home in Tracadie, N.B, and drove to Quebec to buy alcohol. Comeau, a retired power lineman, knew he could buy the same alcohol for less in Quebec. However, upon returning to New Brunswick, Comeau was stopped by the RCMP and charged…

Minimum wage prices low-skilled workers out of a job

Governments should abolish the fruitless minimum wage if they want to do right by young and low-income persons

Minimum wage prices low-skilled workers out of a jobBy Marco Navarro-Genie and Matthew Lau Contributors High unemployment in Atlantic Canada is a longstanding problem. For over four decades, unemployment rates have consistently exceeded the national rate. It is critical for the provinces to reduce barriers to work. Yet governments do the opposite when they raise the legislated minimum wage, as all four Maritime…
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