Time to address Canada’s internal trade barriers
Fraser Institute recommends federal unilateral action in five areas.
TORONTO — Canada can improve its domestic economy and increase its global competitiveness by eliminating interprovincial trade barriers, says a study by the Fraser Institute.
The public policy think-tank outlines several opportunities for freer trade among the provinces now that Canada is part of international trade agreements such as the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the European Union.
Toward Free Trade in Canada: Five Things the Federal Government Can Do To Open our Internal Market
The federal and provincial governments aim to renew the Agreement on Internal Trade (AIT) for the reduction and elimination of barriers to the free movement of goods, services and labour within Canada by March.
Toward Free Trade in Canada: Five Things the Federal Government Can Do To Open our Internal Market recommends several unilateral steps the federal government can take to improve internal trade, including:
• Implementing policies that facilitate greater labour mobility between provinces such as harmonizing apprenticeship and training programs;
• Creating a single national system for corporate registration and reporting that will eliminate costly duplication and facilitate greater investment by foreign and domestic enterprises in the Canadian market;
• Promoting market access and regulatory coherence in provincial energy and environmental policies so that energy products can get to market; and
• Encouraging trade in dairy products between provinces.