How Can The Government Promote Free Trade Around The World When We Don’t Even Have Free Trade Between Provinces?

Canadians can’t even bring cheaper beer across provincial borders, so how can the government be promoting free trade around the world?

A while back, I wrote about an outrageous Supreme Court decision that “upheld an absurd fine imposed by New Brunswick against Gerard Comeau. Comeau’s ‘error’?  Buying cheap alcohol from another province. For that, Comeau was fined for ‘violating’ New Brunswick’s statist liquor monopoly, meaning he’ll have to pay money to the government in order to uphold a monopoly he already pays for through his taxes.”

The ruling was just the latest of many examples showing how Canada doesn’t have free trade between Canadian provinces.

In many cases, it’s easier for provinces to trade with US States or other countries than it is to trade province to province.

And yet, even as we lack free trade within our own country, the government is posturing about supporting free trade around the world.

While much of the foreign press hasn’t pointed out the hypocrisy, here in Canada we need to ask why our country is focused on ‘free trade’ with other nations when we can’t even trade freely at home?

Internal trade barriers take money out of the pockets of Canadians, and weaken our domestic economy. Ironically, this makes us much more reliant on foreign trade, which makes us far more vulnerable to other countries. If the federal government really wanted us to be able to withstand trade shocks, then having real free trade within Canada would be the place to start, rather than virtue-signalling about it around the world.

Spencer Fernando

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7 comments Add yours
  1. Excellent point. And how about prohibiting commerce by campaigning against pipelines like Quebec and BC have done?

  2. Trudeau would have to pass a law circumventing any Provincial laws, Like how he’s trying to force a Carbon tax on every Province. Same with Vaping, I used to vape and live in Ontario, When I ordered some ejuice with nicotine in it, It got stopped at customs in Quebec, because Quebec has the worst Vaping laws in Canada, If it would of came across in Ontario where I lived it would of been fine!!, But no it was tied up in Montreal for 4 weeks and then they sent it back to the USA and rejected it!!. Its just wrong to have borders in a country the size of Canada, its abuse of Provincial laws.

  3. So true Spencer, but our past governments let almost all of our Canadian businesses be taxed to quitting or be bought out, mainly by the US at first, then other nations, giving them grants to set up, and the government said this was to supply jobs for Canadians ? because we were not capable of managing businesses ( even if we had been) I remember many being angered at this, even as our tax supported foreign businesses were not many times supplying jobs for Canadians, and this and other things was a distraction from the trade barriers between provinces, although you can work in any province across Canada, except Quebec, in Canada, Quebec’s citizens can also work any where in Canada freely. Trade across Canada is also stopped by Quebec, unless it is something they need, but they would rather get it from afar In BC for example I am told that their milk, butter and cheese is all from Quebec companies, so many cross the boarder to the US and buy these things much cheaper in the US, the same all across Canada, as food is cheaper there, many things are, Did you know when our government decided to put all these new safety rules on our trucking industry, and Canadian insurance in most provinces is very costly compared to the US, that companies in Canada hired US trucking companies to deliver here as they could not afford the upkeep and cost on their own trucks the costs were so high? I can not remember if this was just Ontario or across the country, but it sure cut out a lot of the business I owned, it is almost always cheaper to deal with the US, than other provinces, especially Canadians living close to the boarder.
    Of course one of the” best?” stories you may have read about, the Trans Canada highway in Ontario, north of Lake Superior, needed a new bridge over a river, this was the only road to get to the west or east through northern Ontario and used by many truckers. Our government in it’s ? wisdom hired a Spanish Engineering team to design this important bridge, pretty much in the center E to W of Canada, then they had the structure made in China and shipped here, I think it was Canadians who got to put it together over this valley with a beautiful raging river at the bottom. As you would expect, the first real cold weather and it heaved, was declared unsafe, Trucks were backed up miles with no where to go in both directions and a long way from where they were from or going to, they were told to go back and go through the US, which would include a whole lot of paper work and permits, no way across Canada. Just saying trade inside of Canada is very difficult.

  4. I’ve been asking the same thing since Brian Mulroney became PM (why don’t these jokers ever fix the Trade issues in our own Country BEFORE signing INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS)??

    1. Because you can’t fix stupid. Instead we have west coast tanker bans while blood oil comes into the east carbon tax free. Pipelines to the east were cancelled after downstream environmental charges were added, something else not applicable to blood oil imported into eastern Canada. It is the consciousness that applies GST to the carbon tax that has to be eradicated. It will be a literal life or death struggle before the suffocating taxpayer/voter can turn things around. My question is whether the Canadian voter is capable of voting strategically. We have the emotional vote down pat but we have to vote smarter. That is our real existential threat because another uncomfortable truth is that you get the government you deserve.

  5. Canadians can’t even bring cheaper beer across provincial borders, so how can the government be promoting free trade around the world? I believe the Supreme Court of Canada should revisit their DECISION on this issue; it makes no sense to have borders within our country. Canadian businesses struggle due to all the rules and regulations. We need politicians who are willing to get rid of our burdonsome rules and regulations and let entrepreneurs and businesses flourish.

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