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Feb 8, 2018

Stop the rhetoric!

From Chamber President, Tom Dyas

The Kelowna Chamber of Commerce is calling on the Premiers of Alberta and BC to stop the rhetoric on inter-provincial trade and instead find ways to enhance our economies rather than ramping up a trade dispute that is now harming small businesses and impacting thousands of families that rely on inter-provincial trade in order to make ends meet.


The current situation with two Premiers trading threats in the media along with what appears to be very little involvement from the Federal Government, threatens to cause major damage to our economy. Nobody wins when there is a boycott and the political uncertainty it creates will threaten much needed investment in both provinces. The ban on BC wine imports needs to stop now and both provincial leaders need to cool off before things escalate to include other products or sectors.


We have enough to be concerned with in our ongoing trade issues with the US. We don’t need to be fighting among ourselves as Canadians. Many small businesses in our area are now the collateral damage in a political fight between two Premiers. We need leadership that is more focused on solving problems rather than getting media sound bites that do nothing but appease their political supporters.


Boycotts between businesses in two provinces will not resolve an issue that is ultimately our federal government’s responsibility. It’s why the Kelowna Chamber also joins the Canadian Chamber in calling on the Prime Minister and the Federal Government to step in and stand up for the regulatory process that is at the heart of this dispute. Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project went through a rigorous Federal Review before it was approved, and while dismissing the result of that process as if it didn’t happen may be good politics, it actually threatens to create global uncertainty about the faith investors can have in Canada’s regulatory processes. Leadership from the Prime Minister at this time would go a long way in cooling this dispute.