Regional Priorities stressed by Atlantic Premiers at Council of the Federation Meeting

July 10, 2019


Saskatoon, SK (July 10, 2019)


Atlantic premiers met this morning prior to the annual meeting of the Council of the Federation (COF) in Saskatoon, SK, to discuss shared priorities.

Premiers Stephen McNeil, of Nova Scotia, Dwight Ball, of Newfoundland & Labrador, Blaine Higgs, of New Brunswick, and Dennis King, of Prince Edward Island, focused on issues related to health care funding and energy transmission.

The premiers noted that Canada’s population is aging and this, coupled with determinants of health such as high incidence of chronic disease, has had a particularly acute impact in the Atlantic region.

Premiers called on the federal government to increase health care funding to address the impact of the region’s aging population on Atlantic Canada’s health care systems. The current federal health transfer does not take aging and other health dynamics into consideration.

The premiers also talked about a potential national pharmacare system and are asking to be consulted around the design of the program so it takes regional needs into account.

The premiers discussed progress with the federal government on developing a Clean Power Roadmap for Atlantic Canada. The roadmap will inform how governments invest in electricity infrastructure as the region moves toward a clean energy future.

Atlantic Canada has tremendous energy resources and the premiers agreed on the need to ensure better connections that will capitalize on those resources and create jobs and benefit the economy for all four provinces.

The agenda for the two-day COF meeting will touch on various topics, including economic growth and competitiveness, immigration, trade and strategic infrastructure. Premiers will also discuss health care sustainability and mental health, including the importance of a strong federal partner in future health funding.

The Atlantic Provinces are important partners in the Canadian federation, and Atlantic premiers look forward to constructive discussions with their colleagues from across the country.



Erin Sulley, Office of the Premier, Newfoundland and Labrador, 709-729-3960
Nicolle Carlin, Office of the Premier, New Brunswick, 506-453-7494
David Jackson, Office of the Premier, Nova Scotia, 902-266-8060
Amanda Hamel, Office of the Premier, Prince Edward Island, 902-368-4400