**** CNS Media Release
Atlantic Premiers spoke today on advancing the shared priorities of the region. Prince Edward Island Premier Dennis King, chair of the Council of Atlantic Premiers, hosted a conference call today with New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs, Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Dwight Ball, and Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil, in advance of the meeting of Canada’s Premiers on December 2, 2019 in Toronto.
The Premiers’ discussion focused on federal-provincial relations, health care funding, pharmacare, labour and immigration, and natural resource development, including Atlantic Canada’s role as a leader in clean energy.
The Premiers are united in calling on the federal government to ensure that health care funding recognizes the changing demographics of Atlantic Canada, and enables all provinces to deliver sustainable and reliable health care services for all Canadians.
Premiers discussed the importance of the resource sector to the Atlantic and broader Canadian economies, and spoke to their shared commitment to develop and maintain a competitive regulatory regime to attract international investment. The Premiers also renewed their commitment to working together to develop new clean and reliable electricity generation and improve transmission networks, including working with the federal government on the development of a Clean Power Roadmap for Atlantic Canada.
Premiers noted the importance of the softwood lumber industry to the region’s economy. The application of duties on some shipments to the United States has impacted many communities. Premiers continue to urge the federal government to redouble diplomatic efforts in Washington to reach a fair negotiated settlement to the dispute, while protecting those provinces with current exclusions.
Atlantic Premiers will bring these issues forward for constructive discussion at the meeting with their colleagues next week.
Premiers further noted the impact on the region’s economy of the current strike at CN Rail, and urged the federal government to work with both sides to achieve a timely resolution to the dispute.
Atlantic Premiers remain committed to working together, and with the federal government, to better meet the needs of residents, grow the prosperity of our region, and be strong partners and contributors within the Canadian federation.