An economist who put the accent on compassion

Nallai showed us there are no differences that we cannot overcome if we show the desire and ability to approach them with an open mind

An economist who put the accent on compassionThe quiet passing a couple of weeks ago of a retired economics professor from Calgary’s Mount Royal University is a footnote in Alberta history worth noting. As an immigrant from Sri Lanka more than three decades ago, Vettivelu Nallainayagam not only helped shape the economics program at that school, but also became an influential fixture…

Breaking down provincial trade barriers an agonizing ordeal

Breaking down provincial trade barriers an agonizing ordealDespite a struggling economy, Calgary’s restaurant scene is more robust than ever, with new and exciting venues opening regularly. Last week, I attended the media preview of another great restaurant in the downtown area – NUPO, in the Hotel Arts, smack dab in Calgary’s up-and-coming East Village district. NUPO features a predominantly vegetarian menu with…

Albertans have elected a pig-in-a-poke for a second time in a row

For business, an ideology-driven agenda – whether from the right or the left – doesn’t create favourable conditions for investment

Albertans have elected a pig-in-a-poke for a second time in a rowCommon sense is not so common, observed the 18th century French writer Voltaire. Sadly, he could be talking about politics in Alberta today. Albertans have been whipsawed by two back-to-back political parties that govern more by ideology than common sense. The NDP governed from the ideological perspective that the state should tax more and use…

Alberta will get one more chance to set a new course

Alberta’s economy needs a break after five brutal years since oil prices fell, driving our economy into an agonizing period of stasis

Alberta will get one more chance to set a new courseWe’re told 2020 could be the year Alberta’s economy turns the corner. So, if we do get some economic breathing room, what are we going to do with it? Alberta’s economy is ready for a break. It has been five brutal years since oil prices fell, driving our economy into a long and agonizing period…

Taxpayers are often the losers in the incentive game

When one government offers incentives and another one doesn't, then the comptetion to attract new businesses is no longer a level playing field

Taxpayers are often the losers in the incentive gameWhen Toronto-based Wattpad chose Halifax over Calgary as the site of its second headquarters last month, the question on many people’s minds was: Which of the two cited factors was the deciding one – concerns about Western separatism or cuts to Alberta’s tax credits for tech companies? The answer isn’t quite as simple as either/other.…

Alberta’s UCP needs the feds to get Trans Mountain done

It was actually the federal Liberals and Alberta’s previous NDP government that did the heavy lifting needed to get the project started

Alberta’s UCP needs the feds to get Trans Mountain doneIt was more than a little disingenuous for Alberta’s still newish UCP government to stand up and claim last week that its “perseverance” led to the start of construction of the long-delayed Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion. “Perseverance has got us to this point,” clucked Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage. “When others were criticizing our energy…

Wexit threatening Alberta’s economic recovery

The worst thing Alberta can do is let the Wexit debate linger. A never-ending debate will only trigger a permanent loss of economic power and status

Wexit threatening Alberta’s economic recoveryWhen the topic of political separation comes up, there’s one thing most of us can agree on: it’s bad for business. Recent grumblings in Alberta about breaking free of Ottawa’s shackles – which are, less face it, profoundly annoying and bad for business in their own way – brought back memories of that other separatist…

‘Firewall’ tactics won’t do much to boost Alberta

As cathartic as it may be, it’s unclear that anything Kenney has prescribed will do much to improve the business climate in this province

‘Firewall’ tactics won’t do much to boost AlbertaManaging our own affairs is good for business. That, at least, is what Alberta’s premier would like us to believe, following a policy speech delivered to a conservative crowd in Red Deer on Saturday. But is it? It depends on how you turn the coin. Premier Jason Kenney said he was up all night writing…
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