Premier Scott Moe and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had their first meeting Friday afternoon in Regina at the legislative building.
Premier Moe says that his conversation with the Prime Minister was one he thought was useful.
"I think the entire conversation was a constructive conversation, and the fact that the conversation was happening I think was necessary," he said. "This is our federal government, this is our prime minister, and we have to engage in particular opportunities where we can progress Saskatchewan's interest. I'll call the issues as I see them and I will always call them on behalf of Saskatchewan people, and though we may disagree from time to time on certain topics that does not preclude that we need to keep talking."
Moe added that during his time as premier he will make every effort to get along and work with whoever the prime minister is to advance and improve Saskatchewan's interest.
The meeting saw various items discussed including NAFTA and how Saskatchewan could help with the negotiations, the steel tariffs that Canada is now exempt to, and the carbon tax.
Moe said that after a conversation with the 23rd prime minister of Canada, Saskatchewan's stance regarding carbon taxation remained strong.
"We have a plan of our own. We have the prairie reliance plan that was released by Minister Duncan not too long ago," he said. "Our choosing not to sign onto the Pan Canadian Framework is because we sign agreements that we feel we can follow through with. This particular agreement is carbon taxation, and carbon pricing is mentioned throughout that agreement, and that is not something that we intend on putting on the industry and the people and families in the province, so we weren't able to sign that agreement."
Moe said that they also had a conversation on equivalency agreements that the province needs to meet it's emission targets.
"The equivalency agreements that we need to continue to work with our federal government on are around coal-fire electricity generation as well as methane emissions," he said. "Those equivalency agreements are paramount to us achieving some of the targets in those industries, and we need to see the progression of them quickly. Those have slowed in the last number of months, and we want to see those equivalency agreements get across the line so we can achieve real emission reductions which is what this conversation is about."
Federal Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale was also in the meeting and said that there is still work to do surrounding the conversation about a carbon tax.
"There are issues that remain outstanding, and there are points of disagreement, but we will continue to work in good faith to identify solutions that will be viable and succeed," he said. "We are not there yet, but we are determined to continue. It was a very constructive tone. Where people were more interested in finding solutions than not finding solutions, so work remains to be done, and the issues around climate change, and the issues of carbon pricing are not yet resolved in relation, but the conversation will continue."
Goodale said that from his perspective the meeting between the premier and the prime minister went very well.
"This was the first time that the prime minister and the premier have had the opportunity to speak both in their capacities," he said. "They had a brief telephone conversation the evening upon which Premier Moe was chosen but this is the first working meeting to talk about issues really, and it was a very cognitive conversation."
Goodale added that the meeting was much like the previous meetings between the premier and prime minister that he has been a part of.
"I've sat through several of those meetings here in Saskatchewan," he said. "The tone has always been pretty good. I think the areas of difficulty is when you go a protracted period of time without those conversations, and the real challenge and the real opportunity is to keep the conversation going."