Freer cross-Canada trade will most benefit Atlantic provinces

A number of restrictions inhibit labour mobility, as well as the free trade of goods and services. And trade barriers add regulatory burdens on businesses

Freer cross-Canada trade will most benefit Atlantic provincesBy Ben Eisen and Alex Whalen The Fraser Institute When many people think about threats to free and open trade to Canada, they immediately consider the protectionist outlook of departing U.S. President Donald Trump. In 2020, another obstacle to the free movement of products and people across boundaries has been the COVID-19 pandemic. However, even…

Atlantic Canada facing a political vulnerability

Fiscal federalism, the lifeblood of the region's economy, faces increasing pressure for reform, especially in the post-COVID-19 world

Atlantic Canada facing a political vulnerabilityMassive government spending has landed the four Atlantic provinces at the bottom of economic freedom rankings among the 10 provinces and 50 U.S. states, according to the new Economic Freedom of North America report. Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island are tied at the bottom, just below Nova Scotia (58th) and New Brunswick (57th).…

How Atlantic Canada fortunes and oil and gas are intertwined

How Atlantic Canada fortunes and oil and gas are intertwinedBy Mark Milke and Ven Venkatachalam Canadian Energy Centre Atlantic Canada struggled to create good-paying jobs long before the COVID-19 pandemic. The multiple reasons include poor policy and high taxes on businesses and individuals. Poor policy reinforces other lousy policy, leading to a self-reinforcing downward economic spiral. For instance, previous governments formed policy forbidding fracking…

Nova Scotia government unwieldy, costly: study

With escalating spending and a shrinking private sector due to the pandemic, Nova Scotia’s large government is a growing concern

Nova Scotia government unwieldy, costly: studyBy Alex Whalen and Steve Globerman The Fraser Institute The COVID-19 outbreak and economic downturn have produced a dramatic increase in government spending across the country. The federal and provincial governments have rolled out a variety of programs aimed to support businesses and individuals through these tumultuous times, in addition to extra public health-related expenses.…

Fracking can lift the Maritimes out of economic doldrums

Fracking can lift the Maritimes out of economic doldrumsThe economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic should include Nova Scotia and New Brunswick lifting restrictions on natural gas fracking. Natural gas prices are low but that won’t last forever. Energy industry observers say the natural gas supply glut existed even well before the pandemic. However, the oversupply problems seem to be worse for American…

COVID crisis opportunity for trade reform in Atlantic Canada

Eliminating trade barriers can help accelerate the economic recovery

COVID crisis opportunity for trade reform in Atlantic CanadaBy Alex Whalen and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute Earlier this summer, the four Atlantic provinces formed the “Atlantic Bubble” as the region works toward freer movement of people amid the COVID crisis. And clearly, the pandemic’s effect on the economy underscores the value of free movement of people and goods, which – on the…

Health-care roadblocks stymie patients

The N.S. Health Authority lets an inefficient telephone system act as an important barrier to timely care

Health-care roadblocks stymie patientsIf there’s any way to inconvenience patients and embrace antiquated methods, the Nova Scotia Health Authority will find it. Ask the sick patients who are trying to arrange appointments with specialists, or for imaging tests or for blood work. Most enterprises try to encourage and support increased consumer access to worthwhile services. Not the Nova…

Reduce income taxes to spur Nova Scotia’s recovery

Attempting to fight high deficits while maintaining high tax rates will reduce the province’s economic growth prospects

Reduce income taxes to spur Nova Scotia’s recoveryBy Alex Whalen and Tegan Hill The Fraser Institute Due largely to COVID-19, the big banks project negative growth for Nova Scotia’s economy in 2020, ranging from -5.5 per cent to -7.4 per cent. Without a strong rebound, such a steep recession could have a lasting impact on living standards in the province and Maritime…

Half measures won’t solve the problem with police

It’s time to reduce funding to police and reallocate those dollars to more proactive ways to reduce crime

Half measures won’t solve the problem with policeHere’s a couple of questions that might have seemed crazy to many people just a few short years ago but are gaining purchase today. Do we really need as much policing as we have? Or are the ever-growing police budgets actually inadvertently leading to greater violence? A lot of us have believed that police exist…

Nova Scotia government faces debt tidal wave

Rising government debt can dampen economic growth and divert billions of dollars away from important public priorities

Nova Scotia government faces debt tidal waveBy Jake Fuss and Alex Whalen The Fraser Institute Just three months ago, provincial Finance Minister Karen Casey released a budget projecting an operating surplus, which would have been the Nova Scotia’s fifth consecutive balanced budget. However, due to COVID-19, circumstances have changed dramatically and the province now expects to run a large deficit this…