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Harper Government Continues Push for Free and Open Trade for Canadians

Highlights importance of open and efficient domestic trade for Canadian businesses, workers and consumers

ST. JOHN'S, NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR -- (Marketwired) -- 08/08/14 -- Industry Canada

Industry Minister James Moore was in St. John's today as part of a national tour to engage businesses, consumers and everyday Canadians on the government's plans to break down the barriers to trade within Canada that harm the national economy and hurt Canadian businesses, workers and consumers.

In a roundtable discussion with business leaders at Quidi Vidi Brewing Company Limited, Minister Moore championed Canada as a free-trading nation yet described how progress on trade within Canada has not kept up with the success of our international trade agreements. The Minister reinforced that it should not be easier to trade with our international partners than within our own borders. In particular, he highlighted the Harper Government's plans to work with the provinces and territories to consider reforms to the Agreement on Internal Trade to bring it in line with the current global economic reality. Eliminating barriers to internal trade and reducing red tape mean that goods and services could more easily move across Canada, creating jobs and boosting economic growth.

During the Minister's tour of St. John's-based Quidi Vidi Brewing Company, he heard first-hand about the challenges it faces with provincial regulations and marketing its products in other provinces.

Quick facts


--  The Agreement on Internal Trade (AIT) is an intergovernmental accord on
    trade within Canada that aims to break down the barriers to trade that
    harm our economy.


--  When the AIT came into effect nearly 20 years ago, Canada had concluded
    trade agreements with only two countries. Since then, Canada has
    concluded free trade agreements with 38 countries that make up nearly
    half the global marketplace.


--  Nearly 40 percent of Canada's trade occurs within its borders.


--  The creation of a new internal trade barriers index, outlined in
    Economic Action Plan 2014, will increase knowledge of the barriers to
    domestic trade and help governments identify priority areas for action.

Quotes

"Our government is committed to working with provinces and territories to make the changes necessary to ensure that trade within Canada is as open and efficient as trade with other countries. The time for action is now. Canada is strongest when united and will be stronger as one economy."

- James Moore, Minister of Industry and Minister Responsible for British Columbia

"Quidi Vidi Brewery appreciates the federal government's efforts to assist small businesses across Canada to grow and expand through the elimination of barriers and irritants to interprovincial trade. For the craft beer sector, improved conditions for internal trade mean increased choice for consumers and potential new markets for producers."

- David Fong, Co-owner, Quidi Vidi Brewing Company Limited

"Let's capture this opportunity to enhance interprovincial trade, which can only yield positive results across the country. Increased competitiveness will provide Canadians with access to a diverse range of top-notch products and services."

- Jo Mark Zurel, Chair of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC) and President/Owner of Stonebridge Capital Inc.

Follow @industrycanada on Twitter and use #internaltrade to let us know how internal trade is affecting your business.

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