Alberta's highly touted free trade agreement with B.C. is "a wolf in sheep's clothing," says the head of the Alberta Federation of Labour. Gil McGowan is warning other provinces that the Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement, dubbed TILMA, "is not all sweetness and light."
But McGowan says union lawyers fear the deal will give companies the right to sue municipal and provincial governments and school boards that try to bring privatized services under the public umbrella.
He's also concerned the deal will result in a "dumbing down" of Alberta rules for trades training.
Liberal critic Bill Bonko says the deal should have been debated in the legislature if it was so good, rather than being negotiated behind closed doors.
But Jason Clemens of the Fraser Institute raves about the deal, saying the Yukon, Saskatchewan, Ontario and the Atlantic provinces are keen on it.
"This really could be a domino effect across the country to remove or dramatically reduce trade barriers," he said.
Also see: Legal advice on TILMA
For more on the TILMA go here and here
This is a provincial agreement that was drafted to meet the open corridor polices of NAFTA and the new North American Union proposed under the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) which will be discussed by the Three Amigos this summer in Kananaskis.
And it fits in with the agenda of the Harpocrites in Ottawa and their business cronies who are promoting this policy as well as the increased use of temporary workers.
The $10-billion plan to help manufacturing compete globallyAnd let's not forget who Harper put in charge as Minister of Human Resources.
Expand the temporary foreign worker program to make it easier to hire non-Canadians when there are no domestic citizens available.
Although governments can only influence manufacturers' success to a certain degree, the industry believes Ottawa could be doing much more to help.The sector's wish list includes lower corporate income taxes, the elimination of provincial trade barriers, more investment in skills, and broader tax credits for industrial training and corporate research.
And there is a Conservative former MLA and anti-union candidate running in former Conservative MP John Williamson's federal riding here. After all Alberta has the worst labour laws in Canada. And is home to the Right To Work Movement which was once headed by Conservative MP Rob Anders.
As Jean Charest once said, back when he was leader of the Federal PC's, "Alberta sets the agenda for Canada."
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