Gavin Magrath, Magrath’s International Legal Counsel, Toronto, Canada

In June 2014 the Government of Canada commissioned a review of the Canada Transportation Act and related legislation, with the goal of looking forward 20-30 years and identifying priorities for action in the transportation sector that will support Canada’s economic well-being. The last statutory review was completed in 2001.

The Report was tabled in Parliament on 25 February 2106 by Minister of Transport the Honourable David Emerson and carried out with the assistance of five expert advisers:  Mr. Murad Al-Katib, Mr. David Cardin, Mr. Duncan Dee, Mrs. Marie-Lucie Morin and Ms. Marcella Szel.

The review was prompted in part by problems in the grain distribution and delivery system circa 2013-2014, but while the rail-based network for grain transport was identified as a priority the mandate for the review included the rail-based supply chain for all commodities, “taking into account the broader goal of a commercially based, market-driven, multi-modal transportation system that delivers the best possible service in support of economic growth and prosperity.”

The comprehensive report is divided into 13 chapters covering rail, marine, and air transport as well as subject matter areas including climate change and northern development. Of particular interest to readers will be Chapter 10: Marine Transport, which will be reviewed in a later article.

The Government of Canada is considering the report and interested parties may make submissions here: