Thursday, April 26, 2007

Sask to join TILMA?

It would be interesting of the NDP government of Saskatchewan chose to join TILMA. There was a report in the papers today that the province will be holding hearings into TILMA.

TILMA is clearly in the interests of economic development. It opens up markets and reduces the costs to developing businesses.

In an ideal world, what province you are in should not impact the ability to operate a business elsewhere in the country.

The fears of the labour sector are completely unfounded when it comes to this agreement. Every trade liberalization has benefited workers, communities, business and governments. But each step of the way there have been fears raised by parochial interests that oppose the expansion of trade as some danger to the public.

It is interesting to see that there is no one arguing to get of NAFTA or WTO, but as they were being negotiated there was huge opposition, and I will admit that in my youth I was opposed to these sort of deals.

The arguments against seem to all be related to fear of what might happen. But the world never comes to a crashing halt.

As trade has liberalized, the global economy has also grown faster and more consistently. Over the last three decades there has been fewer people in poverty than before. More people are able to get beyond basic survival and think bigger.

Inflation has come down to a low rate almost everywhere. Economic growth is happening in almost countries, the exceptions are ones where governments are messing with the economy and causing increasing poverty.

If TILMA adds an extra 1% to the economy of BC and Alberta, this works out to an extra $3 000 000 000 or so. That is about $500 per person in increased wealth. Not huge amounts, but a movement in the right direction.

Trade liberalization can go further. What could also add to the wealth is a reduction in the amount resources pulled in by government.

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