Canada Could Aid Mass Urbanization

“It’s not a transformation that will happen next year, but over the next three to five years, and we’ll see profound changes in China as they move quickly to alter their economic model,” said StAfane Marion, chief economist and strategist for National Bank Financial. “This provides an opportunity for Canadian expertise to get involved over a wide spectrum of the economy.” China’s growth over the past 10 years has been fuelled by massive flows of money into equally massive construction projects across the country, including dams, highways, bridges and towering skyscrapers to accommodate the flood of rural Chinese moving into cities. Canada has benefited greatly from the frenzied building, which has required a huge volume of commodities – commodities Canada has been more than happy to export. The S&P/TSX Composite, half of which is comprised of resource companies, outperformed other major indexes around the world during China’s boom years. Base metal miners and oil and gas companies saw their stocks soar as China, the world’s largest commodities consumer, showed an insatiable appetite for Canadian resources. But that has changed. Resource stocks have slumped in the last two years as China’s commodity imports have cooled. While China’s economy previously grew by more than 10% in seven of the last 10 years, Chinese officials say they now expect it to grow by 7.5% this year and only 7% in 2014. “China is beginning to internalize the environmental cost of breakneck industrialization over the past 20 years and they certainly know they cannot continue at this pace,” Mr. Marion said. “That’s why we’re seeing these new government policies that want to spur consumer demand and more organic growth.” The key component of that organic growth will be China’s consumer. Right now, the per-household disposable income of the average Chinese consumer is only $4,000, a number that represents how much of the Chinese workforce is still comprised of traditional farmers.

Canada Boosts Wheat Output Forecast as Crop May Surpass Record

Health Canada will phase out the current system, under which it sells registered users marijuana grown by Prairie Plant Systems , by the end of March. Instead, starting Tuesday, medical marijuana users, or aspiring users, can send in an application directly to sanctioned corporate producers , along with a doctors note (or in some cases, a nurses note). If approved, they can place an order, pay the market price (the black market price is about $10 a gram; officials say the medical marijuana price will drop below that within a year), and wait for the secure courier to deliver their weed. (MORE: Majority of Americans Support Legalization of Marijuana ) There are nearly 40,000 people registered to use the drug under the current system in a country with a tenth the population of the U.S., and the government expects that number to balloonup to 450,000 by 2024and fuel what could become a $1.3 billion domestic pot industry. But the government expects that the privatized system, with only heavily-vetted producers (so far there are two licensed distributors, of at least 156 applications), will help ensure a higher level of oversight. Were fairly confident that well have a healthy commercial industry in time, Sophie Galarneau, a senior official with Health Canada, told the Canadian Press. Its a whole other ball game. The new regulations have failed to win over advocates for legalized marijuana, who have faced strong resistance from the conservative government led by Prime Minister Stephen Harper. In November, even as two states in the United States voted to legalize recreational marijuana, the Harper government passed strict minimum penalties for people who grow as few as six marijuana plants. They treat pot like its plutonium, says Blair Longley, head of the single-issue Marijuana Party that fielded five candidates in the 2011 parliamentary elections. Speaking to TIME, Longley says hes concerned the market-based system, whichnixes the right to cheaply grow marijuana at home, will make marijuana less affordable for patients. We always knew that marijuana would get legalized in the worst possible way. Its not a surprise that thats whats happening, Longley says. Undeterred, potential growers are lining up to be licensed in the new system, including the conditional owners of a former Hersheys chocolate factory .

Canada Rolls Out a ‘$1 Billion’ Privatized Medical Marijuana Industry

The average production estimate of 11 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News was 32.7 million tons. The canola harvest in Canada, the worlds largest grower, may climb 15.9 percent to 16.0 million tons, up from Julys forecast of 14.7 million tons and surpassing the record output of 14.6 million tons in 2011, according to the report. Analysts in a Bloomberg survey forecast 16.4 million tons. Statistics Canada said it interviewed about 10,500 farmers from Sept. 3 to Sept. 10. The estimate excludes production in British Columbia and Canadas Atlantic provinces, which account for 2 to 4 percent of the national total, the agency said. There are record yields being reported for crops in many areas and the market will not be surprised if canola production exceeds 16 million tons, Chuck Penner, the owner of LeftField Commodity Research, said in a telephone interview from Winnipeg before the report. Its safe to say 2013 is going to be one to remember, he said. Higher Yields The average wheat yield is forecast to be a record 48.0 bushels per acre, Statistics Canada said today, up from 42.6 bushels per acre in 2012. While planting in many parts of Western Canada was delayed this spring by excess moisture and below-normal temperatures, farmers managed to sow most of their crop by mid-June, according to reports from Alberta , Manitoba and Saskatchewan, the largest grower of spring wheat. Crops progressed from good growing conditions and output is expected to be significantly higher than last year due to higher yields, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada said in a Sept. 18 report .

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