Alberta Supports Continued Rail Service Improvements

Alberta Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Verlyn Olson issued the following statement in response to regulations announced by the federal government to implement the Fair Rail for Grain Farmers Act.

“The federal regulations, which take effect today, are another important step in the ongoing efforts to strengthen Canada’s transportation network.

“We are pleased that the regulations incorporate recommendations made by Alberta to add clarity to the legislation and to help ensure there is balanced accountability and greater responsiveness to customers in Canada’s rail freight industry.

“We also welcome the enhanced authority for the Canadian Grain Commission to provide additional protection for producers as part of their delivery contracts with grain companies.

“However, we know there is still more work that needs to be done. While grain movement has improved, it will still be months before the backlog on the prairies has been fully addressed, and another harvest is just around the corner.

“It is imperative that we continue to aggressively move forward with long-term solutions that will further enhance our ability to deliver all goods to market in a safe, timely and efficient manner. A dependable transportation system is essential to Canada’s export-driven economy, and the system must have the capacity to meet the long-term needs of a wide range of industries and commodity groups.

“Alberta will continue to advocate on behalf of our export industries and Albertans to ensure the best interests of all are considered.

“The federal review of the Canada Transportation Act is another crucial opportunity to identify additional improvements and put measures in place that better position our transportation network to keep pace with the demands of our growing economy.

“We strongly encourage representatives from all commodity groups and segments of the supply chain to participate in the review process.”