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Alberta government announces boycott on B.C. wine

By Admin User on February 16, 2018

Premier Rachel Notley is attempting to put a cork in British Columbia’s economy as the Trans Mountain pipeline dispute heightens.

Last Tuesday, the Alberta government announced the AGLC will no longer import B.C. wine, effective immediately. The ban will also include increased enforcement on direct-to-consumer sales.

The retaliation is a result of B.C.’s decision to restrict transport of diluted bitumen from the west coast.

Alberta views the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion as a critical development to its economy. Notley is unhappy with B.C.’s call for further investigation.

“B.C.’s campaign to stop Alberta from exporting our energy products is wrong. It requires a clear and unequivocal response,” said Notley. “I’m afraid we have no choice but to stand up and defend Alberta’s interests.”

In 2017, Alberta imported approximately 17.2 million bottles of B.C. wine, eclipsing $70 million.

Gurvinder Bhatia, editor of Quench Magazine, reveals Alberta’s actions will impact both sides of the border.

“The Alberta government is interfering with private businesses,” said Bhatia. “Since privatization in 1993, Alberta has evolved to develop essentially the best wine selection of any province in this country. That’s because private importers [made] those decisions at the retail level.”

Last year, 95 per cent of Alberta’s Canadian wine sales were wines imported from their west coast neighbour.

B.C. Premier John Horgan reacted to Tuesday’s announcement, urging Alberta to “step back from [its] threatening position.”

“We stand with B.C. wine producers and will respond to the unfair trade actions,” furthered Horgan.

Notley has also established a panel to recommend what further retaliatory trade actions may look like.



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