BBOT Voices Priorities for Upcoming Federal Budget
The Burnaby Board of Trade (BBOT) provides additional value to the business community by making sure its voice is heard by governments at all levels.
This week, following consultations with our membership, the BBOT made an official submission to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance regarding the 2018 federal budget and areas that should be prioritized.
This year’s pre-budget consultations focused on productivity and competitiveness and what could be done to help businesses and workers be more productive.
The BBOT’s pre-budget submission focused on four areas which we would like to see continued government attention:
- Investing in more efficient transportation of goods, services and people. Employees are stuck in traffic and congestion is slowing down the movement of products and services around our region.
- Helping business attract and retain good employees. Businesses tell us this is a major issue and the government can play a role in training and developing the skills we need in our workforce and should work with business to make it easier, faster and cheaper for businesses to take advantage of training programs.
- Acting on the high cost of housing and real estate. Burnaby businesses have cited this issue as responsible for rising business costs and wages, increasing lease/rent rates, and the difficulty in attracting workers from outside the region to move here.
- Incentivizing business investment in software, technology, equipment and other inputs. Business investment in tools, equipment and infrastructure is key to increasing productivity and competitiveness, but many businesses can’t justify or accommodate a big up-front investment. Programs which offset the initial capital outlay or which speed up the recovery of that investment through inefficiencies/savings or capital cost depreciation would be welcome.