$1.25-million project tackles clubroot resistance in canola

Researchers and agriculture company battle the crop-damaging disease and train new scientists

$1.25-million project tackles clubroot resistance in canolaA $1.25-million research project is tackling clubroot resistance in canola to help battle new strains of the crop-damaging pathogen. Funded by agriculture company BASF, University of Alberta plant scientists Stephen Strelkov and Sheau-Fang Hwang will work to identify new sources of pathogen resistance that can be bred into canola seeds. New strains of clubroot, a soil-borne disease that attacks the…

The case for selling Manitoba Crown corporations

Crowns are a huge hidden burden on taxpayers

The case for selling Manitoba Crown corporationsThis is far from the best time for most Manitobans. Covid-19 has poisoned the prairie province’s economy, the finances of the government, education, healthcare, small businesses and more. The reigning party is on the ropes in a difficult environment that favours an even bigger spending opposition to win the next election. That, though, would exacerbate…

Food supply chain resilience put to the test by B.C. floods

Supply chains in Western Canada have always been vulnerable and that’s not going to change anytime soon

Food supply chain resilience put to the test by B.C. floodsImages from British Columbia over the past week have been heartbreaking: human casualties, dairy cows barely breathing above water before being pulled to safety, the loss of livestock across the Fraser Valley. Just devastating. And the flow of goods on rail and roads is severely compromised. Many now claim that flash floods and atmospheric rivers…

Manitoba’s economic growth depends on U.S. trade

But U.S. protectionism is still a threat

Manitoba’s economic growth depends on U.S. tradeTrade is essential for Manitoba’s economy. International exports and imports represented 46.4 per cent of its gross domestic product in 2018. With a significant goods-related industry estimated at 26.9 per cent of GDP in 2019, Manitoba needs strong trading partners to help develop its economy. In 2019, 30.6 per cent of its exports were resource-based…

What does the Trudeau win mean for Western Canadians?

More of the same

What does the Trudeau win mean for Western Canadians?What does another Trudeau win mean for Western Canadians? After all, the actual composition of the House of Commons changed little, and once again, the Liberals will need the support of either the NDP or the Bloc Quebecois to pass legislation. So, for the most part, we can expect a continuation of some programs, including…

Manitoba must do more to encourage mining

Simply possessing the mineral and metal deposits isn’t enough

Manitoba must do more to encourage miningThe Manitoba mining industry received some good news recently, but the province still needs to reform its mining policies for the sector to thrive. Despite some progress over the years, the province continues to have a hostile climate for investment: this needs to change. Vale Ltd. recently announced a $150-million investment to extend nickel mining…

Can Pallister pull a miracle out of his hat?

Or is his time as premier of Manitoba coming to an end?

Can Pallister pull a miracle out of his hat?Brian Pallister likely knows that his time as premier of Manitoba is coming to an end, even though he leads a solid majority government. Fortunately for Pallister, his party and Manitoba, if he retires soon to open the door for a new Progressive Conservative leader, he could be remembered for making Crown corporations and the…

Manitoba unprepared for coming fiscal, political storms

Manitoba’s provincial government depends on long-calcified federal transfer programs to fund 37% of its budget

Manitoba unprepared for coming fiscal, political stormsAround 1915, Winnipeg was frequently described as a second Chicago, a serious transportation hub with a bustling private economy. In 1921, it was the third-largest city in Canada. In the 1960s, Winnipeg was Western Canada’s corporate headquarters city. Today, Winnipeg is Canada’s ninth-largest city, known more in the United States, if not by most Canadians,…

Manitoba politics are invasive and expensive

The province isn't in much better financial shape than Newfoundland and Labrador

Manitoba politics are invasive and expensiveThe scourge of COVID-19 is slowly being beaten back but Manitoba’s economy was in trouble before COVID-19 and the last 15 months have weakened it even more. Before COVID-19, the province’s economic weakness could be attributed to its big-spending governments. The Liberal federal government, the Progressive Conservative provincial government and Winnipeg’s municipal government continue to…

Prairie provinces debt levels a ticking time bomb

An economic burden for future generations

Prairie provinces debt levels a ticking time bombThe debt in Canada’s Prairie provinces has grown colossally during the COVID-19 pandemic, just as debt has in the rest of Canada and around the world. At the end of 2020, Alberta’s debt was estimated at $98 billion, Manitoba’s was $28.6 billion and Saskatchewan’s was $15 billion. These debts are an economic burden for the taxpayers…
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