Canada’s economic revival requires broad strategy

A narrow focus on the green/clean sector won’t get the job done. The sector is too small and the workforce’s skill set doesn't suit the goals

Canada’s economic revival requires broad strategyBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. After the shock Canadians have experienced in 2020, an economic recovery that focuses on jobs, incomes and business growth is much more important than whether it’s ‘green’ or some other colour. However, in Canadian politics these days green invariably symbolizes good. Never mind that green…

Canadian economy will stall in 2020

The next two years will probably bring feeble increases in GDP, in line with 2019’s uninspiring performance. Job creation is likely to decelerate

Canadian economy will stall in 2020As the clock winds down on 2019, it’s time to ponder what the coming year may have in store for the Canadian economy. To provide some context, 2019 hasn’t been a great year for the economy, with inflation-adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) expanding by around 1.6 per cent. This was less than growth in both…

Sluggish investment threatens Canada’s prosperity

The only way to raise living standards and incomes for Canadians is by building a more productive economy. Yet politicians are mum on the subject

Sluggish investment threatens Canada’s prosperityThe recent federal election campaign saw much discussion about climate change, energy policy, housing, the social safety net, and the well-being of the never-defined “middle class.” One subject that was ignored by both the media and those seeking office was productivity. That’s unfortunate and somewhat puzzling. After all, in the long term the only way…

Clean/green movement won’t transform the economy quickly

There are formidable technical and economic obstacles to replacing fossil fuels with other forms of energy

Clean/green movement won’t transform the economy quicklyWith the federal election fast approaching, we can expect to hear a lot about climate change, energy policy and how government can spur the development of a ‘low-carbon’ economy. These themes are central to the platforms of a number of the political parties contesting the election. The discussion of these topics takes place against the…

Canada well placed to meet world’s growing energy demands

Canada well placed to meet world’s growing energy demandsBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of British Columbia When an irresistible force meets an immovable object, conflict typically ensues. So it is with the world-wide effort to come to grips with the unprecedented challenges posed by climate change. While most countries – minus Donald Trump’s America – have notionally signed on to…

B.C. won’t be able to quit fossil fuels any time soon

The results of greater energy efficiency will materialize over the long term, even if politicians seek abbreviated timelines

B.C. won’t be able to quit fossil fuels any time soonJock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. Metro Vancouver residents are rightly upset over paying the highest gasoline prices ever recorded in a North American city. Cost-of-living pressures are already significant for many households in British Columbia, making the recent jump in pump prices particularly hard to stomach. The unprecedented attention being given…

Canadian governments addicted to personal income tax

We need a retooled and simplified tax system that’s suited to a 21st-century economy being reshaped by technology

Canadian governments addicted to personal income taxThe latest federal budget, delivered in March, contains a wealth of information on the activities of the government, as well as the money it raises for its endlessly expanding array of expenditure, regulatory and income support programs. This year, the federal government expects to spend $356 billion in total. Roughly $330 billion is allocated to…

The high-stakes international oil game that Canada’s losing

Canada’s energy wealth risks being stranded while the U.S. boosts its position as a global oil supplier

The high-stakes international oil game that Canada’s losingBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. Canada has long depended on a single market for its exports of energy. This over-reliance on one customer, the United States, carries significant risks. That became evident in recent years as the U.S. ramped up its production of oil, natural gas and other energy products…

Metro Vancouver has too few head offices and related jobs

Headquarters are powerful economic drivers and key factors in creating and sustaining high-wage employment

Metro Vancouver has too few head offices and related jobsBy Jock Finlayson and Kristine St.-Laurent Business Council of B.C. Statistics Canada’s latest survey of corporate headquarters provides updated counts of direct head office jobs for each province and the biggest metropolitan areas across the country. The data shows B.C., and Vancouver in particular, are falling behind. The survey covers publicly-traded and privately-owned companies as…

Are robots coming for your job?

Many employers are struggling to find workers for jobs that may soon be eliminated because of technology

Are robots coming for your job?Will robots soon be replacing humans across broad swaths of the labour market? Judging by headlines touting driverless cars, machine learning and the rapidly-growing digital economy, one is tempted to answer “Yes.” No one can doubt the sweeping effects of new technologies. Historically, tens of millions of jobs have been eliminated by successive waves of…
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