CANADIAN UTILITIES 2020

The CP Rail was part of the deal when British Columbia joined Canada. With a national rail line goods and services could be shipped back and forth. The CN rail was the other major rail service that also ran track all the way to Vancouver. Rail is more or less an oligopoly with the two national lines. Container shipping has grown substantially with rail moving containers stacked two high in some areas but Canada not friendly to the idea due to low bridges and tunnels..

The electricity market in Canada varies from province to province (and territory). Under Canada’s Constitution, each province controls the electricity generation, intra-provincial electricity transmission, electricity distribution and market structure within its borders. However, the federal government has authority over certain aspects of the nuclear generation sector, electricity exports and inter-provincial transmission

Telecommunications has evolved substantially. The advent of mobile devices really revolutionized the industry. The old telephone monopoly is now obsolete. The studio maintains a fixed line which is now used for the fax machine. Internet services are handed by the cable TV operator. Deregulation has allowed third party access but in practice this is very limited.

Various companies operate in Canada in the mobile communications sector. Lots of towers are and antenna arrays are leased to the common carriere. The way the situation is today is driven as much by high labor costs and the constant need to protect revenue sources.

Locally Telus and Shaw compete with various services. Lately fiber to the home has been the latest move by Telus while Shaw still relies on the hybrid fiber coax setup. Recently fiber has found its way to the local neighborhood which has make much faster internet available. Fiber can reach speeds that twisted pair and even coax cannot compete against. Over time as the fiber network is expanded the availability of very high bandwidth internet will allow many new services.

Content law which are unconstitutional exist to create a protected market. This limits the availability of American entertainment. Blu-Ray have region restrictions which forced the procurement of some special software to make the media playable. Domestic services are largely simply feeds from a streaming system with a very small staff that depend on ad revenue, subscriptions amount to a subsidy for a channel that is not viable otherwise. The whole sector needs to be overhauled.

Corporate jockeying for position has been a long standing problem. Labor costs are high which has resulted in some changes. Some service trucks for Shaw are now independent contractors who can write off more than the large corporation can for expenses. Telus does not have many contract workers and their stores are staffed with company representatives.

Corporate relations in Canada are not very good. Organized labor has struggled in the face of contract workers. Changes are slow but invitable.