MONTREAL, June 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - Claude Mongeau, president and chief executive officer of CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI), reiterated his disappointment with Canadian government rail service legislation that completed passage through Parliament following Senate approval today.
"It is unfortunate that the government has passed this legislation because it is not consistent with a sound public policy agenda that encourages increased productivity and innovation in Canada," Mongeau said.
"Canada's railways are recognized globally for their efficiency and service. There is always room for continuous improvement, but we operate in a well-functioning market where there are no systemic service issues. This enviable situation is the result of 25 years of successful public policy that progressively deregulated railways and encouraged greater reliance on normal commercial market forces.
"The federal government's Rail Freight Service Review, launched in 2008, encouraged railways to embrace greater supply chain collaboration and to strengthen service levels. It was certainly an important catalyst in CN's decision to launch a series of collaboration agreements with customers and partners in all sectors of the business.
"Since 2010, we have introduced an innovative scheduled grain service in Western Canada, entered into supply chain collaboration agreements with all of Canada's major ports and intermodal terminal operators, and adopted a new supply chain focus for the movement of many of our other key commodities. All of these innovations were commercially negotiated. They are encouraging stakeholders in the supply chain to achieve improved service levels and greater productivity. They are helping CN's customers compete more effectively in global markets and contributing to the health of the Canadian economy.
"We believe the government should have recognized these significant successes and resolved to promote further progress within a commercial framework. Instead, the government adopted new rail regulation - regulation that could actually chill supply chain innovation that benefits both the rail industry and its customers."
CN is a true backbone of the economy, transporting approximately C$250 billion worth of goods annually for a wide range of business sectors ranging from resource products to manufactured products to consumer goods, across a rail network spanning Canada and mid-America, from the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to the Gulf of Mexico. CN - Canadian National Railway Company, along with its operating railway subsidiaries -- serves the ports of Vancouver, Prince Rupert, B.C., Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile, Ala., and the metropolitan areas of Toronto, Chicago, Detroit, Duluth, Minn./Superior, Wis., Green Bay, Wis., Minneapolis/St. Paul, Memphis, and Jackson, Miss., with connections to all points in North America. For more information on CN, visit the company's website at www.cn.ca.