Canadian Maritime News:
Electronic Chart Issue
On January 4, 2005, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) sent a letter to Nautical Data International (NDI), terminating the Canada/NDI Agreement effective February 4, 2005.
On February 10, 2005, NDI obtained an ex parte order from the Honourable Mr. Justice Robert Hall of the Supreme Court of Newfoundland
and Labrador (Trial Division in Bankruptcy and Insolvency) restraining DFO from terminating and/or breaching the Canada/NDI Agreement, provided that Canadian Hydrographic Services (CHS) is permitted to come back to the court upon five days notice for an application to set aside Mr. Justice Hall’s order.
At present, it is unclear how the licensing issue will now be resolved.
Proposed Tax Tariff and Byrd Amendment
After significant efforts by CMMA and the other marine
industry associations in December, the CMMA received a letter from the Honourable Jim Peterson
, Minister of International Trade
, stating that “yachts and other vessels for pleasure and sport would be unlikely candidates for retaliation until 2008.”
CMMA and the other industry associations will continue to lobby for the removal
of “yachts and other vessels” from the list of commodities to be targeted. It is hoped the elimination of this threat can be accomplished by working and dialoguing with Minister Peterson
and staff at the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
The success of these efforts is a testament to the tenacity of the trade associations and to their foresight to have agreed, in advance, to work
together in the event of an issue arising that would impact our entire industry.
Forward planning made it much simpler to react as a cohesive group representing the combined members. In addition association members played a key and pivot role in the campaign by being willing and able to participate in the communications
plan that was created.
Though the spectre of a surtax has not been completely eliminated, we have elevated the awareness of our industry on the part of MPs and senior government
officials to a level never achieved before.
Meanwhile, the Canadian government
appears to be turning up the heat on the U.S. over the softwood lumber
issue. The likely targets in the first round of retaliatory surtaxes would be U.S.-produced wines and liquor.