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BC Throne Speech: Expand Free Trade, Regulatory Reform

Today\’s BC Throne Speech advocated freer trade between Canada\’s 3 western provinces as well as within the Pacific Northwest to Washington, Oregon and California. As you know, no industry is affected more adversely with artificial trade barriers than the wine industry. Wine still cannot be shipped from wineries direct to consumers in other Canadian provinces and any wine coming across the border is subject to unreasonably high liquor board markups and a glacially slow distribution system. Let\’s hope the BC government is serious about fixing these trade issues. In addition, the throne speech promises a sweeping review of various regulatory bodies such as transit and electricity. While liquor distribution was not specifically mentioned, perhaps it will also be included? After all, the LDB costs $300 million annually to run. That\’s a lot of cash that could be used for social programs.

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