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August 31, 2021
  • The C.D. Howe Institute held a special Policy Seminar on local content and public procurement rules on June 9th, 2021. The backdrop for the seminar was the sense of opportunity but also the challenges emanating from a “rebuilding better” infrastructure agenda in Canada and many countries following the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the urgency of the global climate challenge, and a US Administration publicly committed to increasing the share of locally made goods in public procurement expenditures.
  • The seminar focused on means by which Canada could meet all three challenges simultaneously. The preparatory work for the seminar, and the presentations and discussions at the event proper, yielded numerous insights and recommendations to that effect. The reader will find them in this report, in the form of the rapporteur’s summary, a summary list of Key Action items, and a background paper prepared for the seminar.
  • Many of the discussions focused on practical issues behind the concept of “greening” procurement, in support of reaching Canada’s target of net-zero emissions by 2050. How to maintain Canada’s competitiveness in this context? How to foster new technologies while maintaining a rigorous procurement process? And how to secure a green partnership with the United States that would leave both countries better able to meet their economic and environmental challenges? These questions were very much at the forefront of the discussions.