Chamber Movement Forms Historic United Front To Call For Competitiveness Strategy

Feb 4, 2009 | Government News


The Manitoba Chambers of Commerce was proud to join the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and provincial and territorial chambers across Canada as a formal signatory to a ‘declaration of competitiveness’.

The declaration was released during the recent Annual Meeting of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and the Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec in Québec.

It demands that the government put Canada’s competitiveness front and centre to help ride out the global economic turmoil. “The tried and true notion that government must maintain an environment where businesses can compete is never more important than when times are tough and international competition is fierce” explains MCC President Graham Starmer.  

“Canada can be a leader in the global economy, but to do so, we need to act now to improve Canada’s competitiveness and assure a strong and profitable economic environment that will benefit all Canadians,” say the declaration.

The joint declaration – a first in the history of Canadian chambers of commerce – proposes 14 calls to action to spur growth of the Canadian economy, including:

  •  Create an open and efficient Canadian market free from internal barriers 
  • Establish a competitive tax system 
  • Ensure the Canada-U.S. border is secure and competitive 
  • Adopt immigration policies that match the needs of the labour market 
  • Take positive action to develop talent and support innovation 
  • Invest in quality infrastructure

“In the face of the economic downturn and the real danger posed by the recession in the United States, a competitive Canadian economy must be a top priority for the next Canadian government,” says Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “The well-being of every Canadian family depends on getting our economic house in order now.”

“Competitiveness is everything that enables businesses and individuals to add value. Many factors contribute to greater competitiveness, including regulation, fiscal policy, institutions, education levels and the macroeconomic environment, which is why our proposals are directed at all these levers”, added Francoise Bertrand, President and CEO, Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec.

The joint Canadian Chamber of Commerce / Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec Annual Meeting brings together over 500 delegates from local, provincial and territorial chambers and boards of trade from across the country to set the Canadian Chamber network’s advocacy priorities on national and international issues for the year ahead.

Click here to read the declaration.

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