89.1 WEMU

Michigan And Ontario Negotiating Waterways Strategy

Jun 16, 2016

The Soo Locks
Credit Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Michigan and the Canadian province of Ontario are negotiating a strategy to boost trade opportunities in the region. 

Governor Rick Snyder and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne met in Detroit to announce the beginnings of the joint plan.  Wynne says the goal is to double maritime trade in the region and reduce pollution and invasive species.  “We want Michigan to do well as we want Toronto to do well, and, really, collectively, we are competing with other jurisdictions,” said Wynne.  

Snyder says the state and the province can leverage shared industries and regional water resources.  “Your real competition isn’t your neighbor, most likely it’s some other part of North America or the world,” said Snyder. 

Wynne and Snyder say upgrading the locks in Sault Sainte Marie is a top priority.  That would require approval and money from Washington, D.C.  They say it’s both and economic and national security issue.

The US Army Corps of Engineers is expected to release the results of a study soon.  

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— Rick Pluta is the Managing Editor and Reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org