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Business leaders urge Ottawa, provinces to work together to ‘open up Canada’

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The head of the Business Council of Canada is urging Ottawa and the provinces to coordinate re-opening rules and bring down provincial barriers to capitalize on what he views as success in the first phase of combatting the coronavirus pandemic.

In an interview with the Financial Post, Goldy Hyder warned that missing the opportunity to carefully ease travel and business restrictions where virus rates are relatively low will result in companies going under, most likely in sectors such as travel, tourism, and hospitality, putting many Canadians out of work permanently.

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Travel restrictions across the country — both inter-provincial and international — were a key reason Rocky Mountaineer, which offers train adventures through British Columbia and Alberta to tourist destinations including Banff, recently extended its closure through Aug. 30, said Hyder.

Goldy Hyder Postmedia

“If a hotel chain or the Rocky Mountaineer goes bust, or god forbid an airline … you’re going to have to take care of even more people,” he said, adding that government programs paying Canadians not to work and subsidizing wages and rents are not sustainable for the year or more it could take to develop and produce a safe and effective vaccine.

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