Saskatchewan government calls for fast negotiations to solve grain movement woes
The Saskatchewan Government is calling on the Federal Government to immediately oversee negotiations between the grain companies and CP and CN that will establish specific parameters around getting grain from the farm gate to ships at port.
“In our meetings last week, both CN and CP indicated they are prepared to negotiate and sign level of service agreements with grain shippers with reciprocal penalties and we are asking the Federal Government to immediately ensure this happens,” Boyd said. “Railway companies assured us they are ramping up to have thousands more grain cars per week taking grain to ports and this will be sustained until at least December 2014. Grain companies told us they could quickly move to provide service 24 hours a day if the grain reaches them.”
Boyd added that the provincial government will be closely monitoring basis levels to ensure that they are reduced as grain car movement improves.
After meetings with grain companies in Regina and Winnipeg, and CN and CP in Montreal and Calgary, the ministers tasked with ensuring Saskatchewan farmers see more of their record crop move are certain that a co-operative effort between the Federal Government, the rail com- panies and grain companies will see dramatic efficiencies in the system.
In addition to these immediate actions, the Provincial Government is supporting the Federal Government as it moves to bring more transparency and accountability into the system. This should include having weekly reporting requirements around actual car spots, loading at country elevators, delivery of cars to ports and unloading reports at ports.