On Feb. 9, MCC’s President & CEO, Chuck Davidson, along with Chair Peggy May, President & CEO of Southport Aerospace Centre; Past-Chair Paul Holden, CEO, Education Canada Group; and Treasurer Kevin Ploegman from Fort Group joined Honourable Scott Fielding, Minister of Finance, to share a pre-budget submission.
MCC shared with Minister Fielding the results of the most recent 2020 Manitoba Business Outlook Survey, conducted in November 2020 by Leger, to highlight the issues that business leaders say matter most to them in the here and now: cash flow/liquidity, restricted spending in response to uncertainty, gaps in information related to pandemic emergency financial relief and other government support programs, and high levels of employee stress. To view the detailed survey results, click here.
“We know right now, more than ever, we need to advocate on behalf of business for what will support their continued operation, their recovery, and ultimately, Manitoba’s future sustainability,” said Davidson. “We are very grateful to Minister Fielding for his time, his consideration of our asks, and for an open and honest discussion about where we’re headed as a province.”
The MCC’s pre-budget submission includes recommendations such as:
- additional investments in COVID-19 relief funds for Manitoba businesses, preferably sector-specific;
- retraining and upskilling grants to support the more sophisticated digital economy;
- access to capital along all stages;
- a request for significant improvements in digital infrastructure;
- and more
According to Chair Peggy May, we need responsive dollars to help particular sectors and businesses address specific needs. “The bottom line for us is that government should always be prepared to work with industry, but it’s absolutely crucial right now as we look at restart, recovery, and beyond. The working world has been forced to change dramatically and there are many aspects of the economy that will never to go back to the way they were.”
MCC is looking for the province to make investments to help businesses scale up their digital presence, and we would like our government to encourage successful organizations (those which have continued to thrive amid the pandemic) to support locally throughout their supply chain and procurement process. We also took the opportunity during this meeting to recommend to the Minister that evidence-based decision-making, open communication, and greater advance notice of public health order changes would be beneficial to Manitoba’s business community.
“We have seen throughout the pandemic just how effectively the public and private sectors can work together in a crisis, so we’re advocating for business involvement at every step of the way,” says Davidson.
To view our pre-budget submission, click here.