The Investment Canada Act, implemented in 1985 by the government of Brian Mulroney, replaced the Foreign Investment Review Agency, which had become a potent symbol of Pierre Trudeau's interventionism. While the new act was explicitly intended to welcome foreign investment (including takeovers) with open arms, it included a "net benefit" test to supposedly protect Canadian interests.
With its 900 lakes and a strong local watershed council, Bracebridge, Ont., was a great location for The Muskoka Freshwater Summit, held on June 1 and 2.
Over coffee and a muffin, I spoke with a kind-eyed, silver-haired woman, Barbara Power, a member of Grandmothers to Grandmothers. Her eyes twinkled as she told me about picketing Mike Harris and Walkerton in 2000 but her grew dark when I asked why she was at the summit. "I'm very worried about the future and concerned about what my granddaughter will inherit."
Those who follow the business press closely, and listen attentively to corporate economic commentators, are still mainly in the dark about "who is actually getting what" in the business world.
Some very interesting information does turns up. A current New York Times series entitled "The United States of Subsidies," covers business subsidies handed out by U.S. local governments. It cost $80 billion to attract and keep companies in local communities, the NYT estimated.
How refreshing it was to open Monday's Globe and Mail and actually see good news from the Canadian manufacturing heartland. Greg Keenan reported on the expansion of Hitachi's factory in Guelph, Ont., that makes enormous trucks for mining operations; the plant is doubling output and employment.
Presented by the Council of Canadians Edmonton Chapter, co-sponsored by the Parkland Institute.