Atlantic Chamber of Commerce highlights pressing issues
The Atlantic Chamber of Commerce is releasing its three biggest priorities for Atlantic Canada to ensure growth and stability this year. To gain insight into the issues hitting the Atlantic region, the chamber collected information through the 2023 Atlantic Insights survey. Following the economic hit from the pandemic, the chamber sees supporting small to medium-sized local businesses as its most pressing issue. Following suit is access to qualified workers and sitting in third is the cost of doing business. Chamber CEO Sheri Somerville said members signalled the top priorities for 2023 as the region continues to grow an economy in a post-pandemic world. “The priorities identified by our members paint a vivid picture of an economy that is ready to tackle the challenges ahead with determination and resilience,” said Somerville in a news release. “While businesses continue to require support, they are also seeking a government that can help cultivate a more dynamic and competitive business environment to fuel sustainable growth, lower the cost of doing business and create more accessible pathways to find qualified workers.” Atlantic Canadians are looking forward to seeing the government reducing the complexity of program delivery and the bureaucratic burden put on small to medium-sized businesses. Businesses are also hoping to see the government create incentives for job creation. The second and third issues, access to qualified workers and cost of doing business, are both connected with the success of the economy, said the chamber. Having a rich labour market and lowering the financial burden on businesses can create economic growth throughout Atlantic Canada. The chamber says the Atlantic region will need an ambitious plan to enhance workers’ skills, increase immigration, develop housing and make the region more competitive and investment-friendly by reducing the cost of doing business. The chamber added the policy priorities are a roadmap to creating a foundation for growth and stability. Policy priority details can be found online at atlanticchamber.ca/policy-pillars.