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The experience of Canada’s Intergovernmental relation

Hausarbeit 2016 10 Seiten

Politik - Internationale Politik - Thema: Geschichte der Internationalen Beziehungen



Overview of Canadian federalism

The constitution and forms of government of Canada in IGR

Overview of Intergovernmental relation in Canada

Party politics and party politicians in intergovernmental relations

Formal vs informal institution in Canada



Overview of Canadian federalism

Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometers.

Canada is a federation composed of ten provinces and three territories. In turn, these may be grouped into four main regions: Western Canada, Central Canada, Atlantic Canada, and Northern Canada (Eastern Canada refers to Central Canada and Atlantic Canada together). Provinces have more autonomy than territories, having responsibility for social programs such as health care, education, and welfare. (Bruce Doern,Allen M.Maslove and Michael J.Prime , 2013) Together, the provinces collect more revenue than the federal government, an almost unique structure among federations in the world. Using its spending powers, the federal government can initiate national policies in provincial areas, such as the Canada Health Act; the provinces can opt out of these, but rarely do so in practice. Equalization payments are made by the federal government to ensure that reasonably uniform standards of services and taxation are kept between the richer and poorer provinces. (Veldhuse, 2012)

The present arrangements originate in the British North America Act 1867, which established a federation of several of the British colonies in North America. Although enacted by a Westminster statute those arrangements were largely formulated by Canadian politicians, and established a Federal Parliament and government responsible for a variety of functions and local legislatures and governments responsible for others, generally of a more local nature. The Federal Parliament’s powers included a general grant of powers to legislate for the ‘peace, order and good government’ of the Dominion (as Canada was styled), as well a residual power to legislate for all matters not assigned to Provincial legislatures.

That Parliament included an appointed Senate as well as an elected House of Commons, but had no direct representation for the Provinces. The only formal point of liaison was in the Lieutenant-Governor of each Province, appointed by the Governor-General (an Imperial appointee) on the advice of the Government of Canada, whose powers include assenting to all legislation passed by the Provincial legislature.

The intention may have been to establish a federation with a strong central authority, but that did not last more than twenty years. Disputes about the division of power under the 1867 Act went ultimately to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council for resolution, which greatly strengthened the powers of the Provinces and limited those of the Federal order of government in doing so.

The constitution and forms of government of Canada in IGR

As stated in the previous part Canada has a parliamentary system but it is within the context of a constitutional monarchy, the monarchy of Canada being the foundation of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. (Smith, 2010)

The Governor General of Canada at present David Johnston, carries out most of the federal royal duties in Canada. (Commonwealth public adminstretion reform, 2004)

The direct participation of the royal and vice royalty figures in areas of governance is limited. In practice, their use of the executive powers is directed by the Cabinet , a committee of ministers of the Crown responsible to the elected House of Commons and chosen and headed by the Prime Minister (, 2015) as a the head of government . The governor general or monarch may, though, in certain crisis situations exercise their power without ministerial advice.

The Constitution of Canada is the supreme law of the country, and consists of written text and unwritten conventions. The Constitution Act, 1867 (known as the British North America Act prior to 1982), affirmed governance based on parliamentary precedent and divided powers between the federal and provincial governments.

The idea of IGR in canda follow the countries division in to two level of constitutionally autonomous levels of government: the federal or central government, and the provincial governments. The nation’s basic division of government plays an important role in public finances and public policy. The different levels of government, the formal division of powers, the operation of fiscal federalism, and the key means of interaction between different governments or inter-governmental relation in Canada.

Accommodation of diversity and IGR in Canada

Canada is one of the most multicultural countries in the world, the question of diversity begun during the colonization; according to the royal proclamation of Canada in 1763, the provenance of Quebec is established. It is created as the Province of Quebec out of New France, and annexed Cape Breton Island to Nova Scotia. (philip, 2008) and it became a separate colony in 1769 to avert conflict in Quebec.

The Indian Chiefs Medal, also presented to commemorate the Numbered Treaties of 1871-1921.The Indian Act, various treaties and case laws were established to mediate relations between Europeans and native peoples. (Placeholder2) Most notably, a series of eleven treaties known as the Numbered Treaties were signed between Aboriginals in Canada and the reigning Monarch of Canada between 1871 and 1921. (Treaty Areas, 2002) The role of the treaties and the rights they support were reaffirmed by Section Thirty-five of the Constitution Act, 1982. ( Constitution Acts 1867 to1982)These rights may include provision of services, such as health care, and exemption from taxation.

Now, the acceptance of diversity in Canada is critical, not only on moral grounds but also to make the most of the skills and qualifications of the country’s diverse population. Because it is believed that Canada’s future prosperity depends on its people, including an increasing number of visible minorities.

The governments also believe there is a direct line between each of those attributes and Canadas success in building a more diverse and inclusive society.

Canada is the understanding that their diversity isn’t a challenge to be overcome or a difficulty to be tolerated. Rather, it’s a tremendous source of strength. Canadians understand that diversity is their strength. Thus the acceptance of this diversity resulted and succeeded in growth of economy, culture and politics.

Most of the beautiful skyscraper, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Multiculturalism Act, the Official Languages Act, the welcoming of Muslims, the freedom for Jews and Sikhs, Hindus and Evangelicals to practice their religion as they choose is all the outcome of diversity.



ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Buch)
498 KB
Institution / Hochschule
Addis Ababa University – ceneter for federal studies
canada’s intergovernmental



Titel: The experience of Canada’s Intergovernmental relation