News Release Archive

Nova Scotia was successful in making its case on a number of key
issues discussed at this year's premiers conference, which
concluded today in Jasper, Alberta, said Premier John Savage.

"On important issues such as natural gas and the proposed 
federal-provincial infrastructure agreement, Nova Scotia's
ambitions were more than realized," said the premier. 

All of the Canadian premiers and territorial leaders agreed with
Nova Scotia's position that the distribution of natural gas in
Canada should not be politicized. 

"We put forward a strong case that market forces and regulatory
agencies should make fundamental decisions about natural gas
distribution, not politicians. I had an opportunity to discuss
this issue with most of the other premiers prior to the opening
of the conference and they all agreed that political interference
in the gas issue is inappropriate."

Premier Savage said he told the other premiers that Nova Scotia
was resolute in its determination to get the best possible deal
from any gas development off its coast. 

Nova Scotia was also pleased with the premiers' acceptance of a
flexible approach to any new federal-provincial infrastructure

"Nova Scotia made a strong pitch to have any agreement directed
at improving the province's export potential. Whether it's port
development, telecommunications or roads, any improvement in
infrastructure will help increase Nova Scotia's competitive
position when it comes to exports."

If the federal government accepts the provincial position, the
private sector would also have a role to play in the financing of
infrastructure projects. The total cost of a new program would be
in the area of $2 billion.

In the area of social policy reform, Premier Savage said he told
the other leaders that the provinces have to develop a "health
care vision" for the country. 

"Canadians are becoming increasingly concerned about the future
of health care. As premiers, we must take a lead role in making
sure that health care in this country meets public expectations."

Premier Savage described this week's premiers conference as "very


Contact: David Harrigan  902-497-3817

jlw                     Aug. 23, 1996        3:45 p.m.