MONTRÉAL, November 21, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - The Quebec Employers Council hails the impetus that Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne have given to relations between the two provinces. Several significant developments, notably on energy issues, emerged from the joint meeting of Quebec and Ontario cabinet ministers held today in Toronto.
"It should be noted that in the span of barely a decade, the weight of our two provinces combined in Canada's GDP has gone from 61% in 2003 to 57% today," stated Quebec Employers Council President and CEO, Yves-Thomas Dorval. "In the current economic context, this rapprochement between two provinces confronted by problems that are quite similar is a much needed spirit of cooperation."
Among the issues discussed today, the Council notes with satisfaction:
- The implementing of an agreement aimed at increasing the exchanging of electricity in the coming years to meet the respective needs of the two provinces at peak times. This is a positive development as Québec is currently resuming discussions on its next energy policy;
- The willingness of the two provinces to combine efforts to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions in a harmonized approach rather than going it alone. In this regard, the Council reiterates the importance for Québec to see the carbon market expand to a maximum of other North American players;
- The tightening of discussions on the conditions of acceptability of the TransCanada Corporation Energy East pipeline;
- The holding of future discussions in the area of access to public markets, between the ministers of Economic Development of the two provinces, with a view to the entering into force of the Canada-European Union Trade Agreement;
- The intention to better combine their efforts to urge the federal government to continue to increase its investment in infrastructures.
The Council urges the two governments to sustain these collaborative efforts and wishes to underline the importance of continuing to work on regulatory harmonization and simplification in as many dossiers as possible, notably in the areas of transportation and the movement of goods, as well as in the mobility and recognition of labour skills.
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The Quebec Employers Council brings together many of Québec's largest companies and the vast majority of sector-based employers' groups, making it Québec's sole employer federation. It represents directly and indirectly more than 75,000 employers of all sizes in both the private and public sectors, with operations in Quebec.
SOURCE: Conseil du patronat du Québec
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