January 29, 2018, Ottawa – Today, the federal, provincial and territorial Ministers responsible for Transportation and Highway Safety endorsed a report on the opportunities and challenges associated with automated vehicles, and they agreed to develop a strategy to facilitate their integration, including their testing, on public roads.
The Honourable Marc Garneau, Canada's Minister of Transport, and the Honourable Steve Crocker, Minister of Transportation and Works for Newfoundland and Labrador, co-chaired the annual Council of Ministers meeting.
Ministers also met earlier today, for the first time as a group, with Indigenous representatives to have a dialogue on shared transportation issues and on a cooperative relationship going forward.
Ministers also recognized that transportation contributes significantly to greenhouse gas and other harmful air emissions, and are advancing initiatives to move toward lower carbon transportation, including having infrastructure ready for the use of electric vehicles. Canadians can look forward to a national zero-emissions vehicles strategy later in 2018.
With the upcoming legalization of cannabis, Ministers are taking steps to ensure roads will continue to be safer across the country: enforcement and public education are top priorities. Ministers also agreed on collective road safety priorities that directly impact Canadians in their everyday lives, including addressing impaired and distracted driving, commercial vehicle safety and the safety of cyclists and pedestrians around trucks.
Minister Garneau stressed how the Government of Canada's strategic plan for the future of transportation in Canada, Transportation 2030, aligns well with common priorities agreed to by the Council of Ministers when it last met in September 2016. "It was a pleasure for me to meet my provincial and territorial counterparts as well as Indigenous representatives today to take additional steps to support trade and innovation, and ensure Canadians' transportation needs are addressed. All Canadians benefit from competitive, reliable, safe and sustainable transportation."
"Reliable transportation helps stimulate the economy, creates jobs and fosters business development," said the Honourable Steve Crocker. "Through our provincial multi-year plan, our government, in partnership with the federal government, will continue to make key investments in our roads which play such a significant role in the daily lives of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians."
"Collaboration is a valuable opportunity to share information across jurisdictions," added the Honourable Sherry Gambin-Walsh, Minister of Service Newfoundland and Labrador. "What we have learned here today will inform our work as we strive to make transportation stronger, safer and more sustainable."
Federal, provincial and territorial governments have agreed to continue to work together to enhance safety, support trade, foster innovation and address climate change so that Canadians can depend on a modern transportation system that is safe, reliable and efficient for generations to come.
Office of the Honourable Marc Garneau
Minister of Transport, Ottawa
Transportation and Works
Transport Canada, Ottawa