In our last E-blast of 2018, we reflected on the many highlights that made the year a success, including signature events, advocacy priorities and operational advances. Now as we embark on a new year, the Saskatoon Chamber is looking forward to continuing this success and delivering on an advocacy program that promotes competitiveness, efficiency and growth. Over the course of the year, we will focus on a number of key initiatives that will ensure that Saskatoon remains a top place to do business in Canada. We look forward to working for you and advancing our role as the voice of business in Saskatoon. Happy New Year!
New Year, New Trade Agreement
2019 has arrived, and with it, a new trade agreement has come into force. On December 30th, the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) was ratified by an initial six countries, including Canada, Australia, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand and Singapore. In the interest of diversifying trade, this agreement will expand Canada’s access to a number of Asia-Pacific markets, including Japan, Vietnam and Malaysia. At full membership of potentially eleven countries, the agreement will encompass over 495 million people and a combined GDP of $13.5 trillion. The CPTPP will effectively reduce a number of barriers to trade, including the elimination of tariffs on agricultural, industrial and forestry products, which could result in over $400 million in savings. The agreement will also benefit small and medium sized enterprises (SME’s) looking to access Asia-Pacific markets and includes a chapter dedicated to assisting SMEs with engaging in trade. For more information on the CPTPP, go to https://www.international.gc.ca/trade-commerce/trade-agreements-accords-commerciaux/agr-acc/cptpp-ptpgp/index.aspx?lang=eng
Recap on Year End Items: Municipal Waste Utility and the Ridesharing Option for Saskatoon
Prior to the holiday break, a final City Council meeting was held on December 17th, that featured two items of interest to the Saskatoon Chamber. The first pertained to a motion to rescind a resolution passed on November 19th to fund curbside waste collection through a utility. In response, the Saskatoon Chamber submitted a letter to Mayor Clark and members of Council expressing concern for re-opening the debate.
The Saskatoon Chamber also provided comments on vehicle-for-hire transportation. Ridesharing has become a common option in many jurisdictions across Canada, providing residents with greater options for transportation.