< July 17, 2019

CALGARY, AB – The province of Alberta is dropping many of its exemptions to the Canada Free Trade Agreement and looking to do away with all the rest, Premier Jason Kenney announced this month.

“Alberta is a leader in promoting free trade, job creation, prosperity and value for tax dollars,” Kenney said at a press conference. “And we will do everything we can to encourage our fellow Canadians from coast to coast to help us realize the dream of an economic union in Canada.”

Kenney argued the new policy will save taxpayers money by ramping up competition and will help local businesses reach new markets.

The Alberta Federation of Labour (AFL) saw the move as ideologically motivated and politically unsophisticated.

“We in Alberta labour are not opposed to free trade agreements between provinces,” said Gil McGowan, AFL president. “We understand that there are beneficial results that come from the free movement of goods and services, however, we feel strongly that provinces should, from time to time, be able to give preference to local businesses and workers when it comes to projects that are funded by local tax dollars.”

Full Story: Journal of Commerce