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Opinion

Airlines an exception to Canada’s traditional advantage in transportation

By Philip Cross      

While airlines provide rapid transport across Canada’s enormous distances, spreading their high-fixed costs across a small and spread-out customer base has proved difficult for business firms to sustain, outside of niche markets such as bush planes.

Like our other regulated industries such as banking, dairy and telecommunications, Canada should be encouraging the airline industry to compete on the international stage instead of hiding behind protectionist walls that encourage poor and inefficient service to the domestic market, writes Philip Cross. Photograph courtey of Pixabay

From the days the voyageurs traversed the continent by canoe, by necessity Canada’s immense territory has forced us to develop a superior transportation network. In the 19th century the Cunard Line operating out of Halifax was a leader in transatlantic ocean voyages. Two of the five leading railroad conglomerates in North America today are based in Canada, building on the expertise of CN and CP in operating transcontinental railroads. Canada has parlayed its experience in transporting oil and gas by pipeline into sizeable inroads in the North American market. Conquering long distances is an area where Canada excels.

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