Surrey Business News

Sur­rey Board of Trade Sounds Alarm at Canada In­fra­struc­ture Pro­ject Fail­ures

- Canada News · Politics · Surrey · Ottawa · Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency

The Sur­rey Board of Trade is join­ing hun­dreds of other cham­bers of com­merce and boards of trade across the coun­try to de­mand im­me­di­ate im­prove­ments to Canada’s bro­ken reg­u­la­tory sys­tem to en­sure our en­ergy re­sources get to in­ter­na­tional mar­kets.

Ac­cord­ing to the Sur­rey Board of Trade, the very fab­ric of Canada is be­ing threat­ened by the dev­as­tat­ing im­pact of low oil prices, in­abil­ity to get en­ergy re­sources to global mar­kets and the in­creas­ing ten­sions be­tween Canadians who live in re­source-pro­duc­ing re­gions and other parts of Canada.

“Canada’s eco­nomic well-be­ing is at risk, in ad­di­tion to po­lit­i­cal and re­gional ten­sions strain­ing the unity of our coun­try. We need to come to­gether as Canadians to de­liver a pointed mes­sage to politi­cians in Ot­tawa and across the coun­try: the busi­nesses in your ju­ris­dic­tions want you to act and to act now,” said Anita Hu­ber­man, CEO, Sur­rey Board of Trade.

“The first pri­or­ity is to fix Bill C-69. The gov­ern­ment also needs to im­ple­ment the reg­u­la­tory changes promised in the Fall Eco­nomic Up­date and make im­me­di­ate plans to get our re­sources to tide­wa­ter. Canadians have had enough of the talk. We want to see real, con­crete ac­tions,” added Hu­ber­man.

Bill C-69 di­min­ishes the di­rect eco­nomic im­por­tance of in­fra­struc­ture projects. ‘The

Im­pact As­sess­ment Act’, re­places the Cana­dian En­vi­ron­men­tal As­sess­ment Act 2012 and a new ‘Im­pact As­sess­ment Agency of Canada’ re­places the Cana­dian En­vi­ron­men­tal As­sess­ment Agency. This means that the new act grants the new

Agency and the re­spon­si­ble min­is­ter much more dis­cre­tion in­clud­ing a fed­eral veto which gives the min­is­ter the power, be­fore an as­sess­ment even com­mences, to make an or­der di­rect­ing the new Agency not to con­duct an as­sess­ment if the min­is­ter be­lieves the pro­posed pro­ject would cause un­ac­cept­able ef­fects. This cre­ates un­cer­tainty for in­vestors, for pro­po­nents. The new Act leads to in­creased red tape reg­u­la­tion in Canada.

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