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Government should stabilize dollar: Abitibi CEO says


May 23, 2006
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Abitibi-Consolidated CEO John Weaver is looking to the Canadian Government to stabilize the loonie. According to a …

Abitibi-Consolidated CEO John Weaver is looking to the Canadian Government to stabilize the loonie. According to a report by The Canadian Press, Weaver says Canada’s monetary policy should reflect currency fluctuations.

“It doesn’t make sense that the loonie has gone up 10% every year for the past three years,” Weaver addressed a group of shareholders, largely in response to the dollar’s closure at 90.87 cents on May 23.

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“I believe the Bank of Canada and the government have a lack of vision in putting so much pressure on the manufacturing industry,” he said. “And as an industry leader, we intend to be much more vocal in ensuring that policy-makers are fully aware of the instability this creates.”

CP further reported Weaver as being in favour of a strong, but stable dollar, contending that a predictable currency would go a long way in terms of helping businesses adapt, were they provided with some planning leeway.

“A strong loonie that’s relatively stable would be less damaging to exporters than a currency in constant and rapid progression,” he noted.

Weaver highlighted that the Canadian dollar stood at 63 cents in January of 2002. The drastic increase played a large role in the company’s subsequent closures and layoffs. “To offset this we have closed or idled marginal mills, removing 1.7 million tonnes of capacity, while improving costs and balancing sales with production,” he said.


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