February 17, 2022

Alberta’s Place in the World: The Changing Context of International Trade

What does a good life in Alberta look like in the next decade?

We’ve embarked on a journey to explore how we as businesses, Albertans, and policymakers purposefully co-create a good and prosperous life for everyone through a competitive, inclusive, and sustainable economy by the next decade.

Produced in collaboration with the Canada West Foundation, this report looks at the world in which Alberta exists and how emerging trends—such as the rise of China, nationalist trade policies such as “Buy American”, and the growth of “megaregions,” among others—will impact Alberta’s trading environment and future economic growth.


Alberta does not exist in the world alone. It exists in a complex, interconnected, and ever-evolving system of economies and trade, population shifts and immigration, and increasing polarization and populism, among others.

Whether it’s the rise of China, the need to accelerate decarbonization, the importance of addressing economic and social inequities, or the continued disruption of digital innovation, there are global forces and challenges that we must face in order to build a plan that acknowledges what we are up against as we identify the opportunities for our future and understand Alberta’s place in the world.

And while these trends, forces, and challenges may be global in nature and not unique to Alberta, the implications of them and our responses to them, are.

The reports in Chapter 3 of Define the Decade outline some of those trends and forces; discuss how Alberta can compete and win in a world of complex geopolitics, protectionism, and new megaregions; and explore how these force could upend traditional thinking about attracting capital, people, and business.


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