April 28, 1994
- Honourable John Manley
- Minister of Industry
Dear Mr. Manley:
Re: Environmental Protection Measures and the Internal Trade Agreement
We are writing to express our support for the inclusion of strong environmental protection measures in the agreement on internal trade (the "Agreement") currently being negotiated amongst Canada's federal, provincial and territorial governments. We recognize that the economic cost of provincial barriers to trade can be high; however, environmental measures are seldom, if ever, barriers to trade. Nonetheless, based on briefings we have recieved from officials in your Department, we are concerned that an inter-provincial trade agreement may be used to resist bona fide and needed environmental measures.
We believe that an agreement on internal trade can be developed which does not inhibit the development of sound environmental measures for non-protectionist reasons. Indeed in doing so we believe that Canada can provide leadership to the world in indicating how strong environmental protection measures can be incorporated into trade liberalization agreements.
This letter outlines a number of components and safeguards that may need to be included in the agreement to ensure that provinces are not stymied in their efforts to protect the environment and achieve other legitimate goals. We look forward to your governments' commitment to ensuring these are incorporated into the final agreement.