CN: Re-regulation would require return to taxpayer subsidies
A Canadian National Railway official said Monday re-regulation of grain transportation would discourage CN investment in the sector and could require a return to taxpayer subsidization of grain movements.
Deregulation has produced very competitive rates for rail grain transport in Canada and significant efficiencies in the logistics system, Jean-Jacques Ruest, CN senior vice president, marketing, said Monday
Speaking to the Canada Grain Council annual meeting, Ruest said CN has improved hopper car velocity, resulting in increased loadings at country elevators, steadily increased shipments of Canadian Wheat Board grains since 2004, and increased unloadings of grain to export vessels in the 2007-2008 crop-year.
He said CN believes the capacity and efficiency of the grain handling and transportation system would gain from seven-day-a-week operation at Pacific gateway ports — the gateway is now partially closed weekends and holidays. He said CN would like to see full utilization of all ports, including Prince Rupert, and corridors on a year-round basis; and balancing of bulk vessel shipments with container vessel shipments and inland container loading with waterfront loading.