Safe, nimble, creative: restarting B.C.’s economy

How to mitigate job loss, fear and uncertainty for workers as British Columbia navigates its post-pandemic recovery

Safe, nimble, creative: restarting B.C.’s economyCOVID-19 represents the largest labour market disruption in British Columbia’s history. Uncertainty and fear among businesses, workers and customers about the pandemic affect how we grasp the new normal and move beyond the crisis. They will only resume their lives and work when they feel safe, and see very low-risk pathways back to commerce and…

How mismanagement of B.C. forests is hurting Canada’s economy

Recent sawmill closures have exposed a raft of problems in the industry and government failure to ensure long-term productivity

How mismanagement of B.C. forests is hurting Canada’s economyRecent sawmill closures in British Columbia have brought to light the need for renewed focus on the mismanagement of B.C. forests over the past decades and what to do about it. That mismanagement is having a significant effect on the B.C. and Canadian economies. If you live in the B.C. interior, where more than 820…

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…

B.C. money-laundering crackdown carries hidden costs

The province needs to get its house in order. That means, among other things, good old-fashioned police work

B.C. money-laundering crackdown carries hidden costsBritish Columbia is hardly a tax haven in the mould of Panama, yet organized crime has still established a foothold for laundering,– according to some estimates, $1 billion or more a year. Until last year, despite mounting activity, the problem flew under the radar. Now several reports have made their way to the media and…

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 jobsStatistics 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 of 2017. A head office is defined as an “establishment…

B.C.’s ride-sharing red tape hurts consumers

The government is trampling on the rights of ride-sharing businesses and their potential customers

B.C.’s ride-sharing red tape hurts consumersMany British Columbians want rides from Point A to Point B and will pay somebody to drive them. Others have access to cars and want to earn money giving people rides. But the provincial government is preventing these mutually beneficial exchanges. The governing New Democrats promised during the 2017 election campaign that British Columbians would…

New coalition seeks to create a compelling LNG narrative for Canada

The group is hosting a session on Jan. 15 in Calgary to gauge interest. So far, nearly two dozen organizations plan to attend

New coalition seeks to create a compelling LNG narrative for CanadaCanada's oil and gas industry long ago lost control over the narratives that shaped the worldview of its oil sands sector. Sadly, that perspective includes much of Canada. The sector is constantly reacting to competing narratives expertly controlled by outside forces much more proficient at storytelling than we’ve been. As a result, Canada's global reputation as…

Average workers will ultimately pay B.C.’s new payroll tax

Health tax will reduce wages and job opportunities, and further erode the province’s investment climate

Average workers will ultimately pay B.C.’s new payroll taxBy Charles Lammam and Taylor Jackson The Fraser Institute B.C. Finance Minister Carole James called Medical Services Plan (MSP) premiums “unfair” and argued in a news release that her government’s replacement Employer Health Tax (EHT) is a “much fairer and progressive approach.” More broadly, Premier John Horgan government’s rhetoric about the new tax suggests it…

B.C. falling short of its considerable mining potential

B.C. miners face more onerous permitting process compared to other provinces. Adding another layer will only make it worse

B.C. falling short of its considerable mining potentialBy Ashley Stedman and Elmira Aliakbari The Fraser Institute To encourage natural resource development and the prosperity that comes with it, mining investors need more certainty about exploration activities – not less. It's an issue that deserves immediate attention in B.C. According to a recent Fraser Institute survey of senior mining executives, British Columbia’s regulatory…

B.C. can spur entrepreneurship by cutting personal income taxes

The downward trend in entrepreneurship could have negative and widespread effects on B.C.’s economic well-being

B.C. can spur entrepreneurship by cutting personal income taxesBy Ergete Ferede and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute Entrepreneurship remains a vital source of innovation, which helps grow economies and provide employment opportunities for British Columbians. Unfortunately, several recent studies have found fewer businesses are being started in B.C. (and Canada as a whole), pointing a long-term decline in rates of entrepreneurship. This down­ward…