Inside Logistics

Canadian business leaders mull impact of Liberal victory

Liberal victory has tech, energy sectors spooked; marijuana producers cheering

October 20, 2015
by The Canadian Press (CPSTF)

TORONTO, Ontario—Canada’s business leaders are assessing the potential impact of Justin Trudeau’s massive electoral victory and its impact on the economy and various industry sectors.

At least two CEOs of Canadian companies had expressed jitters earlier this month about the possibility of a change in government.

Grant Fagerheim of Calgary-based oil and gas producer Whitecap Resources Inc said he was “very concerned” about the possibility of Canadians electing another Prime Minister Trudeau.

Fagerheim cited the national energy program introduced in 1980 by the Liberal leader’s late father, former prime minister Pierre Trudeau, as a point of concern for Canada’s oilpatch.

He said it took 15 years for the industry to recover from the program.

Meanwhile, Blackberry CEO John Chen said Stephen Harper’s Conservatives had been helpful to the tech company and said he’d like to see the “status quo.”

However, medical marijuana producers were excited about the change, noting that the Conservatives were the least marijuana-friendly of all three major parties.

The changing of the guard in Ottawa could result in recreational access to the drug—a move that would fuel rapid growth in Canada’s burgeoning cannabis industry.

“I think what you’ll see perhaps, after this election…is a recognition that there is an opportunity to collect taxes on something that is already being sold into the market illegally or illicitly,” said Bruce Linton, the CEO of Canopy Growth Corp.

Canopy’s shares were rising ahead of the federal election. At the close of trading Monday, shares were up nine percent, or 18 cents, to $2.18.

The company’s stock has shot up nearly 30 percent since Oct. 13, when it closed at $1.75.