Business and commercial news: Canada's railways chugging smoothly

The two major railway companies in the country are on track to weather possible economic fallout from the U.S.-China trade war. Amid business and commercial undertakings in Canada last year, Canadian Pacific Railway and Canadian National Railway actually drove total rail freight traffic up by four per cent in 2018 thanks to shipping more than 20 per cent more petroleum and oil during the year. Even with a pipeline shortage of oil in Canada, crude by railway exports increased.

Both railways are expecting demand for oil to continue, but they learned a hard lesson from contracts being broken by the boom five years ago. They have signed multi-year contracts with minimum volumes and increased fees with oil shippers. So, even if the dynamics of the Canadian oil industry change, the two rail companies will still be transporting oil to stateside refineries.

CNR has purchased additional rail cars, doubled tracks and enlarged their yards, and it plans to continue those efforts in 2019. CP has plans to add about 1,000 more grain cars this year. Both companies are primed for continued growth. In fact, CNR had the highest revenues this past October since its inception almost 10 decades ago -- transporting not only oil, but minerals, metals, coal and lumber. CP, which is based in Calgary, transports mostly grain, fertilizer, potash and coal.

It seems like business and commercial dealings in certain areas of Canada are rolling along nicely despite an uncertain economic climate. There are entrepreneurs involved in businesses who rely on shipping for much of their income, and it may be to their advantage to know a bit about business law and how it can affect their bottom lines. A business lawyer in Canada has the knowledge to be able to answer any queries his or her entrepreneurial clients may have -- whether those individuals are small business owners or executives of giant corporations.

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