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Canada needs to chart a new path for the fast-growing Indo-Pacific region to diversify trade in Asia beyond China and shift military commitments away from Europe and North America, according to a new book.

Academics, former diplomats and business leaders contributed essays to The Indo-Pacific: New Strategies for Canadian Engagement with a Critical Region, to help influence the thinking of Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly as she crafts a new policy for the region. The book is being released Wednesday.

The authors argued that Canada can’t rely on the United States for continued prosperity and must develop a Team Canada approach to boosting trade in the Indo-Pacific region, which accounts for 60 per cent of global GDP and 60 per cent of the world’s population.

Ottawa Bureau Chief Robert Fife reports here.

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TODAY'S HEADLINES

PM SEES FIONA AFTERMATH IN NEWFOUNDLAND – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met Wednesday with some of the distraught residents of Port aux Basques, N.L., while getting a close look at yet another coastal town shattered on the weekend by post-tropical storm Fiona. Story here. Meanwhile, there are live updates here on Hurricane Ian.

B.C. TOURISM MINISTER QUITS CABINET – British Columbia’s Tourism Minister has resigned from cabinet to deal with pressing “urgent matters.” Melanie Mark was the first First Nations woman appointed to a B.C. cabinet. Story here from Global News.

UKRAINE SEEKS CANADIAN LEADERSHIP – Ukraine wants Canada to take a leadership role in the creation of a special tribunal to prosecute Russian military and leaders for the crime of aggression. Story here.

BANK OF CANADA PROMISES SUMMARY – The Bank of Canada said it will start publishing a summary of its monetary policy deliberations next year in an effort to improve public understanding of how the governing council makes decisions. Story here.

LOBBYING COMMISSIONER ASKED TO INVESTIGATE CRITIC OF GOVERNMENT’S STREAMING BILL – A Liberal MP has asked the lobbying commissioner to investigate an outspoken critic of the federal government’s online-streaming bill for failing to immediately disclose funding from YouTube and TikTok. Story here.

QUEBEC ELECTION – Coalition Avenir Québec Leader François Legault says incumbent Immigration Minister Jean Boulet is no longer qualified to hold that job after Mr. Boulet said the majority of immigrants to the province “don’t work.” Story here.

SASKATCHEWAN NDP WON’T INVITE SINGH TO EVENT – The Saskatchewan NDP has cancelled plans to invite federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh to a convention next month. Story here from The Regina Leader Post.

NAVY FACES PERSONNEL SHORTAGE – The Royal Canadian Navy has started deploying less-experienced sailors on operations and eliminating certain positions altogether as it struggles with an unprecedented personnel shortage. Story here.

THIS AND THAT

TODAY IN THE COMMONS – Projected Order of Business at the House of Commons, Sept. 28, accessible here.

GOVERNOR-GENERAL IN JAMES SMITH CREE NATION – Governor-General Mary Simon visited the James Smith Cree Nation in Saskatchewan on Wednesday to meet the community and share her condolences directly with affected families. The First Nation and a nearby community were the sites of a series of stabbings on Sept. 4 in which 10 people were killed and 18 injured.

FREELAND MEETING BANKERS, TELECOM OFFICIALS – Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland is attending the Liberal caucus meeting and Question Period, and also attending a board meeting of the Canadian Bankers Association and meeting with the leadership of regional Canadian banks. Ms. Freeland and Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne were scheduled, on Wednesday night, to meet virtually with Canadian telecom executives to discuss the need to restore telecommunication services in Atlantic Canada.

GUILBEAULT IN NIAGARA FALLS – Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault, in Niagara Falls, delivered opening remarks and participated in an armchair discussion with Debra Shore, Regional Administrator for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5, and Glen Hare, Ontario Regional Chief.

POLITICAL PODCAST WATCH – Former Conservative leader Erin O’Toole has a new edition of his Blue Skies podcast out on Wednesday. This episode features an interview with Michael Chong, the party’s foreign affairs critic. Accessible here.

THE DECIBEL

On Wednesday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, Cheryl Rofer, who has worked for more than 30 years as a nuclear scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory and now writes about national security and the war in Ukraine, speaks to the threat of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his inner circle using nuclear weapons if Russian territory is threatened. The Decibel is here.

PRIME MINISTER'S DAY

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in Channel-Port aux Basques, N.L., held private meetings, spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, and was scheduled to meet with local community members impacted by Hurricane Fiona. Other participants included Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey.

LEADERS

Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet, in Ottawa, was scheduled to hold a news conference on Parliament Hill ahead of Question Period.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre attended the Conservative caucus meeting and Question Period.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, in Ottawa, attended the NDP caucus meeting, held a news conference with the Black Class Action Secretariat, and was scheduled to attend Question Period.

PUBLIC OPINION

Thirty-three per cent of Canadians say Prime Minister Justin Trudeau deserves to be re-elected, which is a drop of four percentage points compared with polling done last fall, according to research by Ipsos for Global News. The same poll found that 67 per cent of respondents say it’s time for a party other than the Liberals to take over. Details here.

OPINION

The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on the question of whether Canada’s fiscal policy knows it’s 2022 and inflation is on the march: The fiscal policy that Ottawa and the provinces pursued during the pandemic was stimulative. It added demand to the economy, via big deficits that financed higher public spending and lower taxes. That’s what you do in a recession. And in a time of inflation? Do the reverse. That means a fiscal policy to temporarily remove some demand out of the economy. It means smaller budget deficits, or bigger surpluses. In current political discourse that tends to get translated into “government has to cut spending,” and that is of course one way to lower a deficit or increase a surplus. Another way would be through temporarily higher taxes. And then there’s a third option: forced savings. (We told you that none of this would be popular). Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre has been demanding the Trudeau government fight inflation by suspending scheduled Canada Pension Plan premium increases. However seductive that proposal may be, it gets things backward. A 2022 anti-inflation policy built on the CPP would raise premiums.”

Andrew Coyne (The Globe and Mail) on how Liz Truss’s tax-slashing mini-budget may not be as crazy as it seems:A mini-budget it was not. The first fiscal statement from the Conservative government of Liz Truss, freshly installed as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, had not been expected to add up to much. Instead, the plan unveiled Friday by rookie Chancellor of the Exchequer Kwasi Kwarteng turned out to be surprisingly radical, a mix of sweeping tax cuts and microeconomic reforms aimed at boosting Britain’s chronically sluggish long-term growth rate. Suffice to say the reviews have not been kind.”

Lawrence Martin (The Globe and Mail) on whether Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre should be the one taking on the media, or Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: “But Justin Trudeau is different. He gets attacked by the media as much as any leader I have ever covered. He complains about the media less than any leader I have covered. In response to a recent tweet making this point, 13,000 “likes” came in, the indication being that his high road approach has considerable support. His approach stands in sharp contrast to that of Pierre Poilievre. The Conservative Leader is playing the victim card, going hard on the theme that the media are Liberal lackeys and vowing to scrap the English language CBC.”

David Walmsley (The Globe and Mail) on remembering, on World News Day, that access to information is a human right: “Making a positive difference to someone’s life is the greatest gift a journalist can give. Perhaps an individual is heard for the first time, or an injustice is settled. Those moments when a news editor picks up a phone to hear a scared voice say, “You are all I have left, I have nowhere else to turn.” The last stand between hope and defeat. It is a sacred contract, as old as journalism itself, yet the tenor of our times would try to divide the people from the newsrooms. If those who attempt to turn journalists into the enemy are successful, the people’s right to independent access to information will be lost. And as we all know, a world where people are blinded from facts is a dangerous one.”

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