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Alberta premier checking to see if Brad Wall is breaking free-trade deal
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley speaks to reporters at the McDougall Centre in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016. (THE CANADIAN PRESS / Jeff McIntosh)
The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, March 30, 2017 1:18PM CST
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says she is looking at whether Saskatchewan's Brad Wall is breaking regional free-trade rules by offering incentives for oil and gas firms to move to his province.
Notley says her government wants to see if Wall is breaching the New West Partnership Agreement between British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
But she adds her government won't leave the partnership over Wall's attempts to lure companies to his side of the boundary.
Wall's government has sent letters to Alberta oil and gas firms offering to subsidize relocation costs, trim taxes and royalties, and help find space in unused government buildings.
Notley says Wall's plan is short-sighted and self-defeating, given how much Saskatchewan's economy relies on doing business in Alberta.
Wall says he is letting companies know about existing policies in Saskatchewan and he isn't offering a specific relocation program that would violate the spirit of the provincial trade agreement.
Premier Brad Wall speaks with members of the media following the 2017 budget speech at the Legislative Building in Regina Wednesday, March 22, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Taylor.