The Canadian air transport sector has experienced significant expansion in recent years. Nonetheless, a multitude of taxes and fees are restricting its potential for growth. Given that favourable conditions are dissipating, especially when it comes to low fuel prices, what can governments do to reduce the fees imposed on transporters, and ultimately on travellers?
A carbon market, like a carbon tax, aims to modify behaviours in order to reduce GHG emissions by setting a price for them. Although such mechanisms are regularly mentioned in the news, their economic consequences are less often discussed, to say nothing of their effectiveness. Does imposing a price on carbon always reduce emissions, or does it instead displace them, along with the accompanying economic activity? In the two scenarios examined here, the effect on GHG emissions would be negligible, but the economic impact would be significant.
The criticism most often heard regarding the telecommunications industry in Canada, and especially wireless services, is that Canadians pay a lot more than people in other countries for lower quality services. It is this criticism that was used to justify the federal government’s and the CRTC’s numerous interventions over the past few years aimed at promoting more competition in the wireless sector. But does this criticism stand up under scrutiny?
The virtues of press freedom are widely recognized today. Economic freedom, another essential liberty, is for its part underappreciated. Yet it makes a substantial contribution to the improvement of human well-being, in addition to which it is a necessary condition for ensuring a certain degree of press freedom.
It seems that each week brings its share of bad news about the Quebec health care system, to the point that we forget that certain of its components work rather well. This is the case for senior housing and care, largely provided by the private sector.
For decades, Quebec has been known for its rotten public finances: recurrent deficits, lots of spending, and high taxes. But the provincial budgets tabled this spring by the governments of both Quebec and Ontario suggest that the latter province is now competing for the top prize in terms of financial recklessness.
Innovative drugs help people enjoy longer, healthier, more productive lives. They also allow our health care systems to save money. However, the reimbursement of new drugs by Canada’s public plans can face considerable delays due to a very burdensome regulatory process. Far from resolving this problem, a new reform will duplicate certain stages of this process and possibly lengthen it.
Quebec’s Health Minister announced a reduction in the number of medical school admissions last year in order to keep doctors from ending up unemployed in the future. And yet, one in five Quebecers still does not have a family doctor, and proportionally, Quebec has fewer doctors than most industrialized countries. Is this government control over access to medical training the best way to meet Quebecers’ health care needs?
Each new sugaring-off season brings its share of controversies, with stories about seizures of syrup from producers making headlines. The rules that apply to Quebec maple syrup producers are indeed very restrictive, in addition to stimulating the growth of their competitors in neighbouring provinces and U.S. states.
Is it true that economic growth only benefits a small, privileged elite? This seems to be the belief of certain groups that regularly denounce a “crisis of inequality” in many countries, including Canada. Yet this perspective, which considers wealth creation to be a zero-sum game in which the poorest are prisoners of their economic circumstances, is simply mistaken.