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Ownership limits in Canadian airlines and the country’s biggest railway are set to rise in coming days, with the wrangling over a controversial transport law poised to come to an end.
Transport Minister Marc Garneau’s sprawling reform of transport laws, known as Bill C-49, is due for a vote Tuesday that will likely see elected lawmakers reject changes proposed by the unelected Senate. The bill has ricocheted between the two legislatures, but the Senate is signaling it will eventually bow to demands of elected officials to avoid what one Senator called a potential constitutional crisis.
If they do, it means the bill, first proposed a year ago, is probably set to become law this week. Though it could still face surprise delays, key portions would kick in immediately, Garneau’s spokesman Marc Roy said. These include raising the foreign ownership limit in airlines like Air Canadaand WestJet Airlines Ltd. to 49 percent, from 25 percent now.
Another would be raising the individual ownership limit in Canadian National Railway Co. to 25 percent, from 15 percent. The only person near that limit is Bill Gates, who owns a combined stake in the railway of about 15.9 percent between his investment company, Cascade Investment LLC, and his family’s charitable trust.
This article first appeared on www.bloomberg.com
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