January 22nd, 2021

Business Beat: Building an economic roadmap for the future

By Lisa Kowalchuk on October 30, 2019.

“Canada’s 43rd Parliament has been elected to govern on behalf of all Canadians, in all regions and in all sectors of the economy. Now that the campaign is over, MPs of all parties need to put our country’s needs ahead of narrow partisanship.

Businesses and investors are watching carefully to see how we come together to secure our future. Canada needs its leaders to quickly move from the partisan theater of the campaign to the sober responsibility of governing. Building a new consensus and addressing our economic challenges cannot wait.”

Those words were written in a release by the Honourable Perrin Beatty, PC, OC, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce following the 2019 federal election.

We are committed to working with this new parliament in order to grow our economy, restore investor confidence and create greater prosperity for all Canadians. Now that the election has concluded we will be providing our elected representatives with a guide to creating jobs, economic growth and prosperity for all Canadians. This document identifies Vote Prosperity policy proposals that were committed to by the parties in their respective platforms, building on the steady progress we have made in finding common ground with each of the four major parties through our Vote Prosperity campaign. Our summary of policy proposals and resolutions have found their way into the platforms of each party and we will utilize this as we turn to policy teams of the key parties ahead of the Speech from the Throne in an effort to include our priorities in the ministerial mandate letters.

We recognize that we will need to engage differently with this government as we move forward. Committees will become much more important and will hold much more strength than in the past. This holds true for parliamentary secretaries and the Senate as well. Relationships with all political parties and MPs will also be important, versus just working with the governing majority, providing an opportunity to have conversations with all MPs and not just cabinet.

Our Chamber network will also become increasingly important, as we are the only organization in the country that has a Chamber of Commerce in every single riding, holding a unique ability to mobilize our network and have conversations with our MPs across Canada.

As our government will be more focused on gaining popularity in the short term and deficit spending will more than likely increase with more of a play on identity politics and issues driving short term popularity, rather than longer term visionary leadership, our role will be vital. The challenges facing the country at the start of the election remain and with very little focus on business issues and our economy during the campaign, focus must shift to an economic agenda for the country as there is still much work to be accomplished.

With a Speech from the Throne anticipated before Christmas, our hope is that an economic agenda and our Vote Prosperity recommendations will be included in their mandate going forward and we can provide collaborative leadership for our country moving forward.

Find out how you can join our movement at medicinehatchamber.com.

Lisa Kowalchuk is the executive director of the Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce. For more information on this column or the Chamber, contact 403-527-5214.

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