CME concerned over lack of support for manufacturers in B.C. budget
March 8, 2023 by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) recently noted in a press statement that while it sees some positive measures in the B.C. budget, it is more concerned about what is not included in it.
“The word manufacturing is rarely used in the budget document,” said Andrew Wynn-Williams, divisional vice-president of CME, “There are some measures that could support our industry, but details are vague at best. It seems there are plans to grow expenditures and grow the debt but little for growing the economy.”
CME explains that British Columbia is a high-cost manufacturing environment, and the industry is facing supply chain costs, inflationary pressures and other issues. CME has advocated for a comprehensive manufacturing strategy that would mitigate those costs and help industry to capitalize on B.C.’s advantages. Tactical measures were taken and are important, but they need to be placed in the context of a broader strategy.
The tactical measures CME was pleased to see include the Future Ready Skills Plan. New training seats, short-term skills training, speedier recognition of foreign credentials, and support funding for SMEs to address these challenges are all measures that the association looks forward to working with the government to implement and support. CME is also looking forward to consulting with the government on the new carbon pricing system.
“Government had some strong short-term, post-pandemic recovery programs for manufacturers,” continued Wynn-Williams. “In addition, the Manufacturing Jobs Grant program announced last month is also much appreciated. But these isolated tactical measures need strategic context. In other words, these are great tools, but we still need a toolbox to put them in.”