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Progress badly needed on internal trade
St. Andrews, New Brunswick, July 19, 2018 –The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is anxious to see decisive action by Canada’s Premiers to improve internal trade and reduce business costs at this week’s Council of the Federation meeting. CFIB is closely monitoring the outcome of the meeting, in particular the future of the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), and is available to comment.
“While the Premiers cannot control uncertainty around trade with the U.S., they can control what happens within Canadian borders,” said Laura Jones, CFIB’s executive vice president and chief strategic officer. “We applauded the announcement of CFTA last year and challenged the trade ministers to deliver at least three concrete policies that support small business by the end of 2018. We’re halfway through the year and we haven’t seen any progress yet. Without movement soon, CFTA risks being seen as ineffective as the old internal trade agreement.”
Internal trade was one of three priorities CFIB asked the Premiers to focus on in a letter sent before the Council of the Federation meeting this week. Other priorities include reducing red tape and doing everything possible to maintain or lower government-imposed costs on business, particularly in light of the upcoming Canada Pension Plan increases. Once the increases are fully instituted, they will cost a business of five employees up to an additional $5,500 per year.
“It would be really disappointing to hear nothing about internal trade from this meeting. It’s low-hanging fruit. Something we can and should fix. Fingers crossed,” added Corinne Pohlmann, CFIB’s senior vice-president of national affairs.
CFIB representatives are available to comment on the outcome of the meeting.
For media inquiries or interviews, please contact:
Milena Stanoeva, CFIB
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000 members across every sector and region. Learn more at cfib.ca.