Alberta takes bold step to increase free trade in Canada

Alberta is also launching a fast-track review of its few remaining exceptions to cut needless red tape and create jobs.

Eliminating procurement exceptions from internal trade agreements means more competition for contracts, which in turn will save Alberta taxpayers money. It will also ensure that Alberta companies are not shut out of larger markets across Canada.

The removal of ineffective and inefficient regulations is a key part of the Red Tape Reduction Action Plan to accelerate investment and get Albertans back to work.

Premier Kenney made the announcement at the gathering of Canada’s Premiers at the Council of the Federation meeting in Saskatoon. He also challenged his fellow Premiers to move to automatic mutual recognition of professional and trades qualifications wherever possible.

Internal barriers to trade and labour mobility within Canada cost Alberta’s economy between $50 billion and $130 billion every year — much more significant than the benefits of recent free trade agreements with Asia or Europe. According to Statistics Canada, this is the equivalent of a seven per cent tariff on goods crossing provincial borders. By comparison, no such drag was found on trade between U.S. states.

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