Facebook Toronto, ON – FreshKut Productions Inc. presents Yowronto, an International musical extravaganza, in time for Canada’s 150th year anniversary. The unique name, came about accidentally as its founding directors were musing about the evolution of Toronto slang, ‘Hey Toronto’ became ‘Yo Toronto,’ which jokingly became ‘Yowronto,’ but once it was said, the name stuck and Yowronto became the name of the newest and best musical festival.At a time when proud Northerners across the country are jumping on the opportunity to add their voice to the harmonic blend of Canadian Nationalism, the Caribbean community is stepping up to the mic – but it’s not the same song. On Saturday, July 1 and Sunday July 2, from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm at Woodbine Mall, Yowronto is inviting Canadians of all backgrounds to share in the food, fun, rhythm and good vibes that the best of the heterogeneous Caribbean and Black Identity has to offer.“We have joined the groups of people who are trying to positively project Caribbean culture onto people of every class, color and race,” says Karl Haughton, Director of FreshKut Productions, Inc. Twitter Advertisement YOWronto features Reggae, Soca and Gospel musical legends like Alison Hinds, Baby Cham, Romain Virgo, Lieutenant Stitchie, Eric Donaldson, Professor Nuts and Tessanne Chin. These artists have achieved massive and global success. Alison Hinds for instance, has performed at the best and biggest festivals internationally, her song, “Roll it Gal,” which praises women’s independence in lyrics about female empowerment is one of the most popular Soca songs in the world.The festival also features up and coming stars like the JUNO award winning Korexion; who is increasingly becoming a voice of the Canadian people. His performances have taken place at many notable annual events such as the Canadian JUNO Awards, Toronto Caribana Festival and the Bob Marley Festival in Jamaica.Above all else, the festival features the most talented local artists our nation has to offer, including Michie Mee, Jay Harmony, Carlos Morgan, Blessed, Kim Davis, Ammoye Evans, Captain Love and Jimmy Reid. Michee Mee alone is a marvel, she was Canada’s first notable female MC, and is considered a national hip-hop pioneer. Carlos Morgan, another Canadian heavy hitter has received multiple awards including a Juno Award, two Canadian Urban Music Awards, a MuchMusic Video Award, and an SOCAN Music Award.Great performances are not the only thing that makes this festival one of the best, it features a family village/children zone with arts & crafts available for children. For adults, it features a beer garden and a VIP Lounge provided by Belleeny’s Martini Resto-Lounge. The VIP experience offers a preferred view, exclusive seating, and delicious Italian and Caribbean infused cuisine like coconut shrimps, oxtail ravioli and golden fried calamari. The event is the best opportunity for proud Canadians to celebrate 150 years of greatness with the sounds of Soca, Reggae, Gospel and local hits in a safe and welcoming setting.This exciting festival is sponsored by Flow Top Up, C&W and Liberty Global. Flow Top Up enables Caribbean people living abroad to send mobile credit back home quickly and conveniently. C&W is a full-service communications and entertainment provider and delivers market-leading video, broadband, telephony and mobile services to consumers in 18 countries. Liberty Global is the world’s largest international TV and broadband company, with operations in more than 30 countries across Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean.ABOUT YOWRONTO:YOWronto is a tribute to Canada, boasting a diversity of activities produced by FreshKut Productions Inc. This two-day musical event takes place at the Woodbine Mall on Saturday, July 1 and Sunday, July 2, 2017. Streamed live using the Peeks social commerce platform, YOWronto will be accessible by an international audience. Vendors will showcase cultural arts & crafts along with a tasty variety of Caribbean foods and delicacies to savor. Artists will entertain and music lovers both locally and internationally will earn LIFETIME rewards for supporting stakeholders.WHERE: Woodbine Centre, 500 Rexdale Blvd, Toronto Ontario, CanadaWHEN: Saturday, July 1 and Sunday, July 2, from 11:00 am to 11:00 pmCONTACT INFO: 416 668-0945, info@YOWronto.com Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Advertisement
Advertisement Advertisement Twitter Facebook The Evidence Room, the exhibit that opened recently at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, embodies Robert Jan van Pelt’s detailed and unique analysis of the Holocaust. An architectural historian at the University of Waterloo, he’s written often on the Holocaust, not only proving that it happened but that Auschwitz was carefully planned as a Nazi death site for a million Jews.He remembers when he began teaching in the 1980s; how he was surprised to find that there were no courses in the ethics of architecture. That led him naturally to the Holocaust, the most interesting and most horrible research of his life.READ MORE Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment
Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Jamie Angelopoulos’s “Stand Up For Yourself” (Courtesy Art Gallery of Hamilton) It’s a mea culpa for the gallery, after a recent inventory revealed that only 12 per cent of all works in its collection were made by women. Let that number sink in, it seems to say, spelling it out and repeating it like a mantra: “Twelve per cent.” It’s the present looking over its shoulder to its own past in disgusted disbelief. Advertisement Advertisement “Speaking for Herself” reads the big blocky text on the wall at the Art Gallery of Hamilton, next to a sickly bright quilt fashioned by the late, great Canadian artist Joyce Wieland, who never had any trouble with such things.It’s your first clue that, in this moment of #MeToo and gender equity gaps bursting out from the shadows, the gallery has unequivocally entered the ring.A fuller text nearby makes it more clear: “The longstanding and systemic exclusion or erasure of women artists from art history, exhibitions, collections, the art market and commercial gallery representation is not a debatable issue. It’s a fact.” Twitter Advertisement
Advertisement Login/Register With: “Although Cronenberg was originally relegated to the margins of the horror genre, right from his first, scandalously subversive movies, the director has shown that he wants to take his audiences well beyond the cinema of exploitation, as he constructs an original and highly personal structure, movie after movie,” festival director Alberto Barbera said in a statement. READ MOREVenice: David Cronenberg to Receive Golden Lion for Lifetime AchievementThe director of ‘A History of Violence’ and ‘Eastern Promises’ will be honored at the 75th Venice International Film Festival. Canadian director David Cronenberg will receive the Golden Lion for lifetime achievement at this year’s Venice Film Festival. “I’ve always loved the Golden Lion of Venice,” the filmmaker said Thursday of the announcement. “A lion that flies on golden wings — that’s the essence of art, isn’t it? The essence of cinema. It will be almost unbearably thrilling to receive a Golden Lion of my own.” READ MOREDavid Cronenberg Will Be Presented With Lifetime Achievement Award At Venice Film FestivalDavid Cronenberg has earned yet another accolade. The longtime Canadian director will be honoured at this year’s Venice Film Festival with a Golden Lion, their version of a lifetime achievement award.Cronenberg’s visionary horror films that “take his audiences well beyond the cinema of exploitation” are a big part of the reason he was selected as this year’s recipient, Venice artistic director Alberto Barbera told Variety. READ MORE Advertisement Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Advertisement Venice Film Festival to Honor David Cronenberg With Lifetime Achievement AwardDirector David Cronenberg will be honored by the Venice Film Festival with its Golden Lion for lifetime achievement.The Canadian horror auteur, known for a wide range of edgy films such as “Videodrome,” “Dead Ringers,” “A History of Violence,” “Cosmopolis,” and “Maps to the Stars,” was last on the Lido in 2011 with psychological thriller “A Dangerous Mind.” READ MOREVenice awards Canada’s David Cronenberg lifetime Golden LionCanadian director David Cronenberg will be honoured by the Venice Film Festival with its Golden Lion prize, the festival board announced Thursday, for his lifetime’s work on life, death and sex wrapped up in gory horror and alienation.
After about two successful years at the Holy Oak, the event fizzled out. A few years later Kuplowsky, who as a participant met many of his collaborators at the event, recognized that there was still a need for songwriters to have this creative space, so he picked up the reins and eventually found it a new home at Burdock in early 2018. Facebook Login/Register With: Every other month at Burdock, songwriters come together for a night of unpolished tracks, unrealized hits and lots of nerves.Hosted and curated by singer/songwriter Luke Kuplowsky (aka LUKA), Team Building brings eight to 10 artists together to perform new songs or workshop ideas for a curious audience. Vulnerability is celebrated.Team Building began in 2011 at the now-closed Holy Oak. Local musician Johnny Spence, a bartender and occasional booker for the venue, started it in part as a motivational exercise so songwriters would have a deadline to work towards. Spence felt that by carving out a loving and supportive space where songwriters could receive feedback from their peers and try out new material, they would be inspired to keep creating. Luke Kuplowsky playing a Team Building event at the Holy Oak before the venue closed. Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Advertisement Twitter
By Jorge BarreraAPTN National NewsHobbled by pneumonia and with his campaign out of cash, NDP MP Romeo Saganash has decided to pull out of the NDP leadership race, it emerged Thursday, even as some of his most ardent supporters scrambled to find an 11th hour solution to keep the Cree politician in the running.Saganash, the first Indigenous person to ever run for the leadership of a federal party in Canada, is expected to announce his decision Friday to drop out of the race in his riding at the Hotel Continental in Val d’Or, Que., at about 11 p.m. local time.Saganash’s decision to call it quits came after his campaign ran out of money and while he was battling pneumonia and dealing with sickness in his family, supporters said. Many of his supporters reacted with shock and sadness at the news.Still, some held out hope late Thursday a last ditch effort could convince him to change his mind.When reached Thursday evening after the news broke on Twitter, Saganash said, “don’t believe what Twitter says” before hanging up.A source close to Saganash, however, confirmed he planned to pull the plug on his leadership bid.Saganash told one of his supporters over Facebook earlier in the day that he was quitting the race because his campaign ran out of cash.“Announcing tomorrow that I have to withdraw,” wrote Saganash to Calgary artist Lee Deranger. “No…funds.”Deranger responded writing, “Don’t..I think I can help, let’s go public with a plea for help.”Saganash wrote back saying not to bother.“No, don’t waste the money!”Saganash’s campaign released a statement announcing his withdrawal. It was supposed to be embargoed until 11 a.m. Friday, but journalists reported its contents as news spread that the MP for Abitibi-Baie James-Nunavik-Eeyou would be pulling out of the race.“It is impossible to run a winning campaign as the favourite second choice. People send you good wishes, but they don’t send their money”, said Saganash, in the statement.Saganash’s campaign never really managed to gain traction in a race overshadowed by candidates like Quebec MP Thomas Mulcair and party strategist Brian Topp.Deranger, who hosted Saganash during a campaign stop in Calgary this past December, said the campaign was being run on a “shoe-string.” Deranger said that Saganash was avoiding hotels and staying in people’s homes during his campaign stops.“He is not doing the fancy campaign trail,” said Deranger. “He is staying at people’s homes, we are feeding him.”Deranger, who compared him to South African leader Nelson Mandela, said she gave Saganash a banana and an orange for breakfast before he left her home at dawn with her husband for the drive to the airport.Deranger said Saganash was hit by pneumonia which forced him to cancel and event in Sudbury, Ont., on Sunday. Deranger said Saganash was home that day being cared for by his family.Daniel Wilson, Saganash’s campaign manager, confirmed Saganash was battling pneumonia.“He does have pneumonia,” said Wilson, in an email. “That is a small matter that he is overcoming.”On Thursday night, Deranger was busy connecting with others in the Saganash camp to find a way to keep the campaign going. She planned to auction off one of her paintings over the weekend and was using social media to stir up support.“If 1,000 people across this country each put in $5 you have $5,000,” said Deranger.Wilson said Saganash would not be cancelling his planned announcement Friday.Saganash supporter Jude MacDonald said the news was hitting his circle of backers hard.“There are people deeply affected by this,” said MacDonald.“I cannot believe this. I am in shock,” wrote one supporter on a closed Facebook group for the campaign’s volunteers. “Just got the flyers and was sending them out.”MacDonald said Saganash’s campaign was hurt by the media’s focus on a horse race, which ignored the ideas of a man with experience ranging from the local to the international sphere. MacDonald said Saganash also faced a rigid leadership race structure.“If we have a party that is truly sympathetic with Aboriginal leadership, maybe we should have debates more in keeping with Aboriginal tradition like having a debate in a circle,” she said. “That kind of inclusiveness is more than just a gesture.”The embargoed statement said that Saganash’s campaign had triggered a “tremendous” reaction among Aboriginal people,” but the work needed to reach their communities required an infrastructure that couldn’t be built in a single campaign.“There remains much work to do to bring this community to the party, but a strong foundation of hope and engagement now exists,” said Saganash, in the statement.Saganash is not expected to endorse any other candidates Friday.“My mother, sisters and brothers and my children all need more attention than I have been able to provide,” said Saganash. “I am unable to devote enough time to them, my constituents or my party and run the kind of campaign that I would like to run.”email@example.com
(Onion Lake Chief Wallace Fox was not available to comment on the community’s appeal.)APTN National NewsThe Onion Lake First Nation in Saskatchewan is appealing a June court ruling ordering it to release financial information to its band members.The case was brought by Charmaine Stick, who partnered with the Canadian Taxpayers Federation in 2016 to force the band to comply with the First Nations Financial Transparency Act – a law passed by the Stephen Harper Conservatives requiring First Nations to publish salaries and expenses online.“This is like a bad joke,” said Stick who is a member of the Onion Lake band in a statement released Wednesday. “Because the chief and council can’t seriously think they can convince a judge or anyone else that they should be able to spend our community’s money without being open about what they’re spending it on.”In November 2014, Onion Lake launched a $50 million court action against Ottawa over damages suffered as a result of “punitive measures” imposed by the federal Aboriginal Affairs department after the Cree community refused to publicly disclose its finances as required by recently passed legislation.The legal action also seeks to have the Federal Court find that the legislation, known as the First Nation Financial Transparency Act, has no force on Onion Lake Cree Nation and that the legislation breaches the community’s treaty rights. Onion Lake is also seeking a ruling that finds Ottawa has breached its fiduciary duty.Less than a year later, Federal Court of Canada Justice Robert Barnes ordered the federal government to stop pursuing legal action against several First Nations who have yet to submit their public financial disclosure to the federal Aboriginal Affairs department.But according to Stick, 90 per cent of First Nations across the country have complied with the law.“Why are they spending thousands of dollars on legal bills to appeal a court decision in favour of transparency? Grassroots people are demanding transparency and we’ll continue the struggle until we all know what’s happening with the money in First Nations communities,” she said.In its first few months of being in office, the federal Liberals said they would not enforce the compliance measures in the transparency act and lifted sanctions against communities that refused to abide by the law.The government said it would bring in measures in a more cooperative way.An administrator in the Onion Lake band office said officials at the moment have “no comment” about the appeal – but did say the community of 6,200 does have access to the band’s financial records. The administrator would not say if those records included salaries and expenses.2007-2008 was the last time the community filed an audited statement with Indigenous Affairs.firstname.lastname@example.org
Brittany Hobson APTN National NewsOver the past two years, APTN National News has been following the story of a young Winnipeg athlete living with a rare liver disease.Last year, she took on the Canadian Transplant Games.This year, Allexis Siebrecht is moving on to bigger email@example.com
Laurie HamelinAPTN NewsThe LNG Canada project in British Columbia will move fracked natural gas from northeastern British Columbia to the Pacific coast.In the 40 year lifespan of the project, thousands of new wells will be drilled.While there might be jobs and opportunities for local First Nations, others worry that new wells will destroy an area already heavily impacted by firstname.lastname@example.org@Laurie_Hamelin
VICTORIA – British Columbia’s Green party says it will introduce a private member’s bill this week that backs ride sharing, despite long-standing roadblocks from the Opposition Liberals and NDP government.Transportation spokesman Adam Olsen said Tuesday the arrival of ride sharing to B.C. has been stalled by both the Liberals and NDP.He said the Green party’s bill comes to the legislature for the third time Thursday as the Liberals and NDP blame each other for failing to deliver on election promises to implement ride sharing.“Ride-hailing to me is an example of a government unwilling to embrace innovation on both sides of the house,” said Olsen. “We saw an Opposition that didn’t do it while they were in government. We saw our new government kicking this issue down the road, and I think it’s important we have a real conversation about an issue that is now five years old.”Transportation Minister Claire Trevena indicated Monday that ride sharing is at least a year away, despite an NDP promise to bring in services like Uber and Lyft by the end of 2017. The government has hired a consultant to provide advice, with legislation not expected until next fall.Olsen said ride sharing’s slow route indicates the unwillingness of the NDP and Liberals to grasp new ideas.“There’s a taxi industry. There’s a ride sharing industry. There are companies in this province looking to start the B.C. version of this. We need to be preparing B.C. for the future. That means dealing with the recent past and we’re not doing any of it.”The Liberals and New Democrats exchanged barbs in the legislature Tuesday during question period about the failures to bring ride sharing forward. Both parties promised during last spring’s election campaign to have ride sharing up and running by the end of this year.“We want to be constructive and come up with a solution that works for B.C., for the very complex situation we have in B.C.,” Trevena said in the legislature.Earlier, she said the government anticipates having to amend up to six pieces of legislation to bring in ride sharing. Trevena also said understands people want the services, but the minority government will not race ahead as its studies ways to ensure safety for passengers and a level playing field for the taxi industry.Private member’s bills rarely get support from the government. NDP House Leader Mike Farnworth said he’s not prepared to comment on legislation that has yet to be tabled.Liberal transportation critic Jordan Study said the Opposition is prepared to work with the Greens when their private member’s bill is tabled.
TORONTO – Canadian marijuana companies were riding high in the latest quarter as they ramped up production capacity ahead of the deadline for the legalization of recreational cannabis next summer while also extending their reach outside the country’s borders, analysts say.Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX:WEED), Canada’s largest licensed marijuana producer, was the latest to report its second-quarter earnings, posting a $1.3-million loss attributable to shareholders, despite doubling its revenue compared with a year ago.Still, its chief executive Bruce Linton told analysts Tuesday the company is “driving ahead” and taking actions now needed to position the company for the future, such as strategic partnerships in Denmark and Jamaica.“The international opportunities are now increasingly happening,” Linton said on Tuesday’s conference call.It was a strong quarter for Canadian cannabis companies, said Russell Stanley, an analyst with Echelon Wealth Partners, with many indicating they are on track and on budget with expansion plans ahead of the federal government’s July 2018 deadline for the legalization of recreational marijuana.Still, as marijuana companies gear up for the domestic recreational market amid concerns of a supply shortage, many have also been laying the groundwork to benefit from future growth markets such as Germany and Brazil, he said.“Specifically on the medical front, the potential for exporting to other markets or establishing a partnership on a local basis and produce domestically, in country, is there and very real and in markets that are substantially larger than ours,” Stanley said.For example, MedReleaf (TSX:LEAF) in August completed its first international export of medical cannabis oil to Brazil, Canopy Growth in September signed a supply license agreement to Spain and a strategic partnership in the Danish market, while Aurora Cannabis shipped its first 50 kilograms of dried cannabis flower to Germany through its subsidiary in September.Shares of Aurora (TSX:ACB) shot up more than 28 per cent Monday on the back of its earnings last week that showed a 169 per cent jump in revenues in the quarter ended Sept. 30, and $1.2 million in sales of dried cannabis in Germany, said Chris Damas, the author of the BCMI report.There has been much talk about the potential for international sales from Canadian licensed marijuana producers, but Aurora’s disclosure was the first to quantify them, he said.“These companies are really attacking the export markets… That is really where the growth is going to be. I think most companies and analysts too have come down in their expectations for domestic sales,” Damas said.He noted that the distribution plan for recreational cannabis in Ontario, the largest market, with 40 stores initially is unlikely to support the kind of growth these companies seek.However, the ripple effect of marijuana exports on the domestic supply of the drug is unclear.MedReleaf chief executive Neil Closner told analysts on its second-quarter earnings call that it is there is likely to be more demand than supply when recreational pot is legal.“We may have to make difficult decisions on which markets we initially support and where we allocate our products,” he said on Monday.Stanley says the ongoing medical cannabis shortage is likely to persist in the near term. But with Health Canada ramping up approvals of new licensed producers, to 73 currently, up from 38 at the end of January, the gap is likely to close in the medium and long term, he said.“Whatever supply shortage that we see in the near term, the market’s going to iron them out, ” Stanley said. “Because the single biggest barrier to ironing them out is really no longer much of a barrier.”
MONTREAL – Montreal’s Just For Laughs answered doubts about its future Wednesday with the company’s sale to an investor group led by Canadian-born comedian Howie Mandel.The new owners, which include U.S. talent agency ICM Partners, said the company will continue normal operations, with the same leadership in place.Mandel says he has always been a big fan of the annual Montreal comedy festival and performed many times over the last decade.“Nothing feels like coming home more than being part of the Just For Laughs,” he said from Los Angeles.Just For Laughs was rocked last fall after several women came forward with allegations of sexual assault and sexual harassment against its founder and majority stakeholder, Gilbert Rozon.Rozon, who stepped down as president in October, said he would sell his shares in the Just For Laughs company in response to the allegations, which he has denied and have not been proven in court.Financial terms of the deal announced Wednesday were not divulged.Mandel said he’s always felt frustrated that the event isn’t even bigger or get the “props it deserves.”“What Woodstock was to rock and roll, this is bigger to comedy and television in every language.”Mandel said he hopes he can be a strong voice promoting it to comedians around the world.“I just want to be loud and entertaining and get the message out that if you want to be anything of any value in comedy you have to come to Montreal,” he added.Comedy observers said they were worried when ICM’s name surfaced as a potential buyer a few weeks ago.Mark Breslin, co-founder of the Yuk Yuk’s comedy clubs, said Mandel’s involvement mitigates those worries.But Karl Moore, a management professor at McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management, said it’s unfortunate that another successful Quebec company has resorted to foreign ownership.“We’ve lost some big companies in Montreal to the U.S. and elsewhere and it’s a bit disappointing from the viewpoint that Montreal and Canada can’t maintain those kinds of companies,” he said, pointing to Alcan, Cirque du Soleil and Bombardier’s C Series program.In addition to the comedy festival in Montreal started in 1983, Just For Laughs produces international comedy tours, television specials and annual festivals around the world including in Toronto, Vancouver and Sydney, Australia.It has production and distribution businesses in more than 135 countries and its programming is seen on more than 100 airlines.Festival chairman Pierre-Marc Johnson said the strategic alliance with Mandel and ICM ensures it has the resources to thrive and removes uncertainties about its future.He also welcomed the commitment to maintain two festivals in Canada’s two official languages.The new owners also said they are in talks with prominent unnamed local Quebec players to join the investment group.Mandel said he hopes French-language comedians who have distanced themselves from the festival will return since he admires their work and says it’s vital to have a French component.Media giant Quebecor Inc. said last week that it would not exercise its right of first refusal in the sale of Just for Laughs.It had claimed the company could not be sold without its consent and filed a request for an injunction in Quebec Superior Court, demanding its 2012 partnership deal with the comedy festival be respected.On Monday, its cable subsidiary Videotron announced it is becoming a partner of a new Montreal comedy festival that will be launched this summer over the two weeks preceding Just For Laughs.— With files from Julien ArsenaultFollow @RossMarowits on Twitter.Companies in this story: (TSX:QBR.B)
The Dow Jones industrial average surged nearly 670 points, erasing nearly half the ground it lost last week and marking the biggest gain since August 2015.The broad gains Monday were led by technology stocks and banks, which took some of the biggest losses last week as trade tensions flared between the U.S. and China.Investors were encouraged by signs Washington and Beijing are open to negotiating on trade.Microsoft jumped 7.6 per cent and Bank of America climbed 4.4 per cent.The Dow rose 669 points, or 2.8 per cent, to 24,202.The S-and-P 500 climbed 70 points, or 2.7 per cent, to 2,658.The Nasdaq climbed 227 points, or 3.3 per cent, to 7,220.Bond prices fell.The yield on the 10-year U-S Treasury note rose to 2.84 per cent.The Bank of Canada’s average value for the Canadian dollar on Monday was 77.60 cents U-S, down 0.18 of a cent from Friday.The S-and-P/T-S-X composite index gained 74.82 points to 15,298.56. The May crude contract closed at 65 dollars, 55 cents U-S per barrel, down 33 cents.
CAMBRIDGE, Ont. – The federal and Ontario governments will pitch in a combined $220 million toward a $1.4-billion upgrade at two Toyota Canada manufacturing plants.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made the announcement Friday at Toyota’s plant in Cambridge, Ont., which, along with a facility in Woodstock, Ont., will see the upgrades.“The government of Canada will be contributing $110 million in partnership with the government of Ontario, which will match our investment,” Trudeau said.Upon completion of the upgrades, the Cambridge and Woodstock factories will become Toyota’s North American manufacturing hub for the RAV4, including hybrid versions.The investment is expected to result in the creation of 450 new jobs and 1,000 new co-op jobs, and spending of $200 million by Toyota in research and development in Canada over the next 10 years.The two plants currently employ about 8,000 people and produce more than half a million vehicles each year.“These measures support Canada’s competitiveness and build our capacity to do the kind of advanced automotive research and production that companies like Toyota want to do more of,” Trudeau saidThe announcement comes against the backdrop of a potential final push for a new NAFTA deal this year where the auto industry has been a crucial part of talks so far.Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne said she pushed Toyota on a trip to Japan, touting the province’s automotive sector.“It’s a vote of confidence in our talented workforce and in our entire province,” she said.The announcement also comes just days before the election campaign officially begins in Ontario.Wynne, whose party has been lagging behind the Progressive Conservatives in recent polls, said her Liberals know the importance of supporting manufacturers with such investments.She denied the announcement was an attempt to buy votes.“This is an investment that has been in the works for some time,” Wynne said.“This has much more to do with Ontario’s ongoing successful economy than it does with an election. But it is part of our record as we go into this election that we have invested in the auto sector, that we have partnered with the auto sector — and we believe that is the way we should go forward.”
CALGARY – Shares in AltaGas Ltd. fell Wednesday after it announced president and CEO David Harris had resigned suddenly following an unspecified complaint.“The board of directors of AltaGas and Mr. Harris have mutually agreed to his resignation due to a complaint under review by the board,” the company said in a news release.“This complaint is not related to AltaGas’ strategy, operations or financial reporting.”The Calgary-based company refused to provide more information. It didn’t say who had made the complaint.AltaGas’s stock fell by as much as 71 cents or 2.6 per cent to $26.37 on the Toronto Stock Exchange but recovered to $26.60 by mid afternoon.“We view this unexpected departure of David Harris negatively as the company is going through a transformation period with the integration of WGL and (it) provides uncertainty to AltaGas shareholders over long-term leadership,” wrote Ian Gillies, an analyst for GMP FirstEnergy, in a note to investors.The company’s $6-billion deal to buy Washington, D.C.-based energy utility company WGL Holdings, Inc., was announced in January 2017 but didn’t close until early this month after the last needed regulatory approvals were received.Including assumed debt, AltaGas says the acquisition value is about $9 billion.Last month, AltaGas announced an agreement to sell 35 per cent of its interest in B.C. hydroelectric operations for $922 million, thus achieving about half of its target of $2 billion in asset sales needed to fund its acquisition of WGL.The deal was shepherded by Harris, who has been with Calgary-based AltaGas since 2010 and its top executive since April 2016. He was 55 years old as of the end of 2017.In Wednesday’s news release, Harris is quoted as saying his time at the company has been a “privilege.”“I leave AltaGas feeling proud of the team’s accomplishments and I look forward to seeing their continued success,” he said.The role of chief executive officer will be shared on an interim basis by AltaGas founder David Cornhill, who will also remain chairman of the board, and Phillip Knoll, an industry veteran and director of AltaGas.Cornhill founded AltaGas in 1994 and was its CEO until April 2016.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.Companies in this story: (TSX:ALA)
NEW DELHI – India signed a $5 billion deal to buy five Russian S-400 air defence systems on Friday despite a looming threat of U.S. sanctions on countries that trade with Russia’s defence and intelligence sectors.The deal was signed in New Delhi during a visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss nuclear energy, space exploration and trade.India has requested that the U.S. grant it a waiver for the deal from sanctions prescribed by the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, a U.S. law passed in August 2017 that is intended to punish Russia for its annexation of Crimea and alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. elections.The U.S. did not spare China from sanctions last month for purchasing its own Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile systems and fighter jets.If the U.S. does impose sanctions on India, it is unclear how India could pay Russia for the military equipment, since the law bars dollar-denominated financial transactions.Vladimir Sotnikov, a foreign affairs expert at an independent research institute in Moscow, believes India could make the payment in a mixture of rupees and dollars to try to circumvent the sanctions.“I do not think that India would succumb to U.S. pressure over the purchasing of the armaments from Russia,” he said. “India has a very sophisticated policy of separating the relationship between India and the U.S. and India and the Russian Federation. And India is in a good negotiating position right now.”The National Security Council at the White House said in a statement that the Trump administration urges all “of our allies and partners to forgo transactions with Russia that would trigger sanctions” under the act, known as CAATSA.“The administration has indicated that a focus area for the implementation of CAATSA Section 231 is new or qualitative upgrades in capability – including the S-400 air and missile defence system. Our recent action to sanction a Chinese government entity for an S-400 delivery underscores the seriousness of our resolve on this issue.”Officials with India’s external affairs and defence ministries confirmed the deal was signed after Putin and Modi made no reference to it during a news conference following their talks.An 11-page joint statement made only passing mention, saying that “the two sides welcomed the conclusion of the contract.”The deal will likely bolster the close relationship between India and Russia that dates back to the Cold War, when the U.S. tilted toward Pakistan, India’s neighbour and archrival. But it is also likely to strain ties with Washington.India is the world’s largest importer of military hardware, according to Mumbai-based think-tank Gateway House, and has depended on Russia for political support as well as billions of dollars in military hardware. Nearly 70 per cent of India’s present-day defence equipment was procured from Russia, according to India’s Defence Ministry.India’s acquisition of the S-400 long-range missile systems has been considered critical to countering a perceived threat from China, which is increasingly making economic inroads throughout South Asia, India’s traditional sphere of influence, according to military experts.“It gives the capability to destroy targets inside another country. It’s a very important capability,” said retired Indian air force Air Marshal Nirdosh Tyagi.India has also developed closer defence ties to the U.S. in recent years with joint military drills and defence sales.India has signed more than $15 billion in U.S. defence contracts since 2008, including for C-130J and C-17 transport aircraft, P-8I maritime patrol aircraft, Harpoon missiles and Apache and Chinook helicopters.___Associated Press writer Deb Riechmann in Washington, DC, contributed to this report.
CALGARY — Alberta’s finance minister says Ottawa’s latest fiscal update shows the federal government doesn’t appreciate how badly the price squeeze on western Canadian crude is hurting the Canadian economy.“It’s clear the federal government’s not speaking the same economic language of Albertans,” Joe Ceci said Wednesday. “Ottawa is living in a different economic planet.”Ceci said he was disappointed the fall economic statement included no actions to help Alberta oil producers narrow the price gap between their product and U.S. light crude — around a staggering $45 a barrel recently.He said Ottawa has not demonstrated a clear understanding of the economic damage caused by the failure to build new pipelines to coastal waters, enabling exports outside the United States.“We face a critical time for Canada’s energy sector and until our market access issues are addressed, the national economy will continue to forfeit billions to the American economy,” Ceci said.“This update does not address one of the biggest concerns Albertans have — getting fair value for our non-renewable resources.”Last month, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley proposed Ottawa invest in moving oil to market on rail cars as a stop-gap measure to relieve some of the landlocked oil glut until new pipelines come into operation.Ceci said he would have liked to see a mention of crude-by-rail in the economic statement.But he said there could be more information on that matter as soon as Thursday, when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is scheduled to visit Calgary.“We’re busily working to get those numbers together.”Ceci said he is pleased with measures included in the fiscal update to allow manufacturers to write off certain capital costs immediately. It was something Ceci pitched in a letter to his federal counterpart.“This improves our competitiveness and is a win for Alberta workers and companies,” Ceci said. “I’m pleased the federal government listened to our advice and took action.”The Canadian Press
EDMONTON — Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says she’s disappointed with Ottawa’s lukewarm response to the province’s plan to ease oil bottlenecks by buying more rail cars.She says it’s simplistic to dismiss buying rail cars by saying they probably wouldn’t arrive until a pipeline expansion were already under construction.Alberta oil is currently selling at a discount of about $45 a barrel because of an oil glut due to a lack of pipeline capacity.Notley has proposed Ottawa invest in moving oil to market on rail cars in the meantime and as a hedge against future shipping problems.Notley says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who spent the day in Calgary on Thursday, left Alberta with a better idea of how crucial the issue is than when he arrived.She’s also thanking people who she says helped her make her point when they shut down part of a downtown Calgary street for a rally during Trudeau’s visit.Alberta could go ahead with the rail car purchase with or without the federal government, she said Friday after an announcement in Edmonton.“The government of Alberta will do what it needs to do, whether we do it by ourselves or with support from Ottawa,” she said. “It might be reasonable for them to come to the table.”Notley is planning a trip to Ottawa and Toronto next week for meetings and speeches to try to keep the oil bottleneck on the federal government’s front-burner. She has said the price gap between Canadian and U.S. crude is costing the country’s economy $80 million a day.Trudeau said in Calgary that the federal government is doing what it can to get the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion built, which would triple the line’s capacity to carry oil to tankers on the west coast.The federal government bought Trans Mountain and its expansion project for $4.5 billion last summer only to have the Federal Court of Appeal strike down its approval. The court cited inadequate Indigenous consultation and failure to consider impacts on the marine environment.The Canadian Press
CALGARY, A.B. – With just over a week remaining until the May 31 deadline set for abandoning its Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, no suitors have publicly emerged to step into builder Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd.’s shoes.Analysts and observers say they remain perplexed by Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s comment last week that “plenty of investors would be interested in taking on this project,” after the federal government said it would offer an “indemnity” or insurance to guarantee it is built.Kinder Morgan said Monday it has nothing to add to last week’s statement from CEO Steve Kean in which he repeated the May 31 deadline and said that discussions are ongoing but “we are not yet in alignment.” It’s difficult to guess who might take Kinder Morgan’s place without knowing what guarantees or deals are being offered by the federal government and possibly the province of Alberta, said Samir Kayande, a director with RS Energy Group in Calgary.He pointed out that the richer the deal, the longer the list of potential replacements for Kinder Morgan, which could include pension or private equity funds.“There is still time to get something done around a guarantee of some sort that will satisfy Kinder Morgan,” he said in an interview on Monday.“It really depends on the scope of the federal and provincial guarantees that are going to be offered. The governments are in kind of a tough spot here because if anyone does step in, it’s going to take them months or longer, potentially, to ramp up the whole effort.”The federal government has said its indemnity and suggestion of the entry of a third party gives it an advantage as it negotiates with Kinder Morgan but Dennis McConaghy, a former TransCanada Corp. executive and industry analyst, said he disagrees.He said it would be a “political disaster” for both Morneau and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley if the pipeline in-service date is delayed beyond 2020 because both governments have staked their reputations on it being built. “I’ve been very skeptical about the advent of third parties,” said McConaghy. “This deal has to get done with Kinder if the focus is to get the pipeline in service by 2020.“This project is essentially an expansion and a debottlenecking of an existing pipeline so it’s very difficult to build the project without selling the original Trans Mountain asset, which is of course a very complicated prospect.”He said the cost and delays involved in bringing in a third party makes it clear that the federal government’s best bet is to reach an agreement with Kinder Morgan.Meanwhile, finance officials had no new details to report in an email received Monday. Trans Mountain has been operating since the 1950s, carrying as much as 300,000 barrels a day of oil and refined fuels from Edmonton to the Vancouver area, where it connects with a line carrying crude to refineries in Washington state.The planned tripling to 890,000 barrels a day could give Canada access to alternative markets as booming production from U.S. shale plays reduces Canada’s biggest customer’s need to import northern oil.B.C. is fighting the pipeline in the federal Court of Appeal and in B.C. Supreme Court. It has also referred to the B.C. Court of Appeal its own proposed legislation to cap oil shipments across the province.Enbridge Inc., North America’s biggest crude pipelines operator, has denied it is negotiating to take over the Trans Mountain expansion project. Rival pipeline company TransCanada Corp. didn’t respond to a request for comment on Monday.Oilsands producer Cenovus Energy Inc., a company hit hard by oil price discounts in the first quarter and a committed shipper on the project, refused comment when asked if it is interested in buying a stake in the project.Kinder Morgan says it has already spent $1.1 billion of estimated $7.4 billion price of the project.(THE CANADIAN PRESS)
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John RCMP say that the Canada Revenue Agency phone scam continues to be an issue in the Fort St. John area.The scam artist calls the intended victim and purports to be an officer with the Canada Revenue Agency who tells the victim that they owe back taxes and that the easiest way for them to avoid jail time is to send the CRA the back taxes in the form of iTunes gift cards or prepaid Visa gift cards.The CRA scam has continued to evolve and use different ploys and tactics to swindle unsuspecting victims for at least the past five years. Your best course of action is to hang up your phone if you receive a call from someone claiming to be an officer with the CRA. The real Canada Revenue Agency will not call you and any correspondence directed to you will be received by regular or registered mail.The CRA will never ask for personal information through an email or text message or by clicking on a link.The CRA will never request payment by prepaid credit cards or iTunes gift cards, and it does not send emails containing details of a tax refund or Interac e-transfer payments.The CRA advises Canadians to confirm the status of their tax accounts before taking any action that may be the result of pressure from suspicious calls or emails, and to verify the legitimacy of the communication by contacting the CRA directly at 1-800-959-8281 or by checking My Account or My Business Account.For more information about fraud scams involving the CRA, visit Protect yourself against fraud.If you’ve shared personal information, contact Equifax and Trans Union to place fraud alerts on your account.If you’ve shared banking information with the scammers, contact your financial institution to place alerts on your account.If you receive a scam phone call, the RCMP says you don’t need to contact them and your best course of action is to just hang up on the call.For more information on this fraud and others click on this link:http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm or call them at: Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre Toll-free at 1-888-495-8501