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Western premiers discuss trade issues

DAWSON CITY, Yukon -- Western Canada's premiers met in Dawson City yesterday and talk inevitably revolved around tr...

DAWSON CITY, Yukon — Western Canada’s premiers met in Dawson City yesterday and talk inevitably revolved around trade with the U.S.

The Americans were criticized for having a double standard, and receiving subsidies for Alaskan pipeline production. That could put the potential Mackenzie Valley pipeline at a disadvantage.

“We believe in open and free trade across our borders,” says B.C. Premier, Gordon Campbell. “Hopefully in the long term, they’ll get back to a sensible economy and a free market economy that allows the market to decide where it’s best to invest in pipelines, and I think over time we’ll have both of those pipelines built,” he adds, referring to a Canadian pipeline.

Manitoba Premier, Gary Doer, chimed in saying “I don’t think we can talk against U.S. subsidies of grain, and U.S. subsidies through tariffs of softwood lumber and take a different position on the infrastructure for energy.”

The Premiers all agreed that Ottawa should be lobbied to shell out $1.3 billion to Canadian farmers to help offset the damage done by the U.S. Farm Bill.

Trade will continue to be a hot topic of discussion over the next couple of days, as Alaska Governor Tony Knowles, Wyoming Governor Jim Geringer and Paul Cellucci, the American Ambassador to Canada take part in the summitt.

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