The new drug-price reform not what the doctor ordered

The well-being of patients is at risk

The new drug-price reform not what the doctor orderedBy Krystle Wittevrongel and Maria Lily Shaw Montreal Economic Institute A highly-contested drug-price reform is set to come into effect in Canada in January 2022. Critics of the major overhaul, including patient groups, doctors, and academics, are hopeful that the new federal cabinet will take their concerns to heart and rather than stifle pharmaceutical innovation,…

Expanding eligibility will do little to increase blood supply

The voluntary model isn't working: time to look at a better way

Expanding eligibility will do little to increase blood supplyRecently, Canadian Blood Services (CBS) made the news for allowing the donation of blood plasma from gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (gbMSM) in two cities. While broadening eligibility redresses an exclusionary policy, it does little to increase the supply of plasma available for Canadians who need it. Given that a…

Alberta leads the way in cutting labour mobility red tape

Making it easier for professionals certified in over 100 occupations to move to the province

Alberta leads the way in cutting labour mobility red tapeWhile nearly one in three Canadian businesses is reporting labour shortages, Alberta is taking steps to make it easier for professionals certified in over 100 occupations to move to the province. Currently, these professionals wait between six and 12 months for their credentials from other provinces to be recognized. Thus, highly proficient Canadian-trained professionals like…

Let’s be smarter on carbon capture. We won’t get to net-zero without it

There is a real opportunity to reduce GHG emissions through decarbonization

Let’s be smarter on carbon capture. We won’t get to net-zero without itCOP26 in Glasgow is likely to call for even more ambitious GHG emission reduction targets than the ones that have been consistently missed by virtually all countries. Canada’s existing target of reaching net-zero emissions by 2050 is daunting enough as is. Strangely, much of the focus of carbon policy has been on reducing the amount…

Canada’s plan for climate change needs to use all the tools in its artillery

Why not use carbon emissions as a building block for other industrial processes and products?

Canada’s plan for climate change needs to use all the tools in its artilleryClimate change demands immediate action, and there’s no shortage of discussion about emissions reduction. Indeed, climate policies and pledges flowed left and right leading up to the federal election. However, largely absent from the mainstream dialogue on the shifting energy landscape is any pragmatic talk about the productive use of carbon emissions. That’s right –…

Rather than defund the police, rethink its core functions

Less of an officer's time should be spent on functions that don’t involve protecting the public

Rather than defund the police, rethink its core functionsRising crime rates have required Canadian police forces to reconcile managing their budgets with fighting crime. It’s not an easy balance to strike. Yet there is a simple way to save hundreds of millions of dollars: re-think the division of labour for police. Modern police officers receive extensive training to carry out tasks requiring an…

How to reduce our emissions without penalizing rural regions

Policies should be fair for all Canadians, regardless of where they happen to live

How to reduce our emissions without penalizing rural regionsBy Miguel Ouellette Olivier Rancourt and Krystle Wittevrongel Montreal Economic Institute Reducing our greenhouse gas emissions is one of the big concerns of our age. The numerous diverging interests pitted against each other on this issue make it a real puzzler for policy-makers, though. After many years of public policies aimed at reducing GHGs, layered…

Canada’s clean energy future must include nuclear

Ignoring its potential would be a missed opportunity

Canada’s clean energy future must include nuclearIn 1950, Canada faced a difficult choice between the desire to be a leader in the development of nuclear energy technology and the fear that such technology would bring the end of the world a little closer. Despite concerns related to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Canada elected to be in the vanguard. As…

Let’s have permanently quicker drug approvals

On average, drug approvals take three months longer in Canada than in the U.S. and one month longer than in Europe

Let’s have permanently quicker drug approvalsBy Maria Lily Shaw and Krystle Wittevrongel Montreal Economic Institute The past year has shown us beyond the shadow of a doubt that human ingenuity is a match for the greatest of challenges. The rapid development and mass production of several COVID-19 vaccines are proof of our remarkable capacity for innovation. Pharmaceutical innovation, one of…

Changes to royalties could super-charge upgrading in Alberta

Fixing the royalty structure seems like low-hanging fruit

Changes to royalties could super-charge upgrading in AlbertaWith news of the official termination of the Keystone XL project, the Alberta government is out approximately $1.3 billion. What’s more, the province is left with unrefined bitumen that it doesn’t have the capacity to upgrade to higher-value products like gasoline and diesel. Why, then, does the province not look to develop its own capacity…

Regulatory quicksand holds back clean tech in Alberta

Sitting on an enormous economic opportunity that could address current financial and environmental issues and help diversify the economy

Regulatory quicksand holds back clean tech in AlbertaWith Alberta’s economy still sputtering and not expected to rebound until 2023, the knowledge that we are sitting on an enormous economic opportunity is music to the ears of most Albertans. The fact that this opportunity not only addresses current financial and environmental issues but also helps diversify the energy sector is a veritable symphony.…

Free interprovincial trade once and for all

Canada’s GDP per capita would increase by 3.8 per cent simply by removing interprovincial trade barriers

Free interprovincial trade once and for allBy Olivier Rancourt and Krystle Wittevrongel MEI The theme of the post-COVID-19 economic recovery is on everyone’s lips, and there’s no shortage of debate about what should be done. According to some, the government should raise taxes on the rich, as if this were a way to promote growth. For others, this is an opportunity…