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Health care, energy costs expected to be focus of premiers meeting in Halifax

HALIFAX — Health care and the effect of carbon pricing measures on the rising cost of living across Canada are slated to take centre stage at today’s meeting of the country’s premiers and territorial leaders in Halifax.

Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston says health care is the main formal agenda item at the latest Council of the Federation meeting and he hopes talks will produce innovative ideas that can help provinces address the problems plaguing the health system.

Houston says discussions may also venture into carbon pricing and Alberta’s plan to withdraw from the Canada Pension Plan.

The focus on the cost of fuel comes after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced last month a three-year pause on carbon pricing for home fuel oil for the 10 jurisdictions where federal fuel charges apply.

British Columbia Premier David Eby says the pause on carbon pricing is unfair to jurisdictions like his province, which collects its own fuel tax and is not eligible for the relief.

Meanwhile, Ontario Premier Doug Ford says he is calling for the end of carbon pricing outright across Canada.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 6, 2023.

The Canadian Press