CME lauds Ontario government’s commitment to the manufacturing sector in the province
March 27, 2023 by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) lauded the commitment to advanced manufacturing in Ontario’s 2023 budget, in a press statement. CME welcomed broad incentives introduced to enable investments in technology adoption, skills development, and energy transition. CME notes that this follows the unprecedented investment committed by the U.S. government as part of the Inflation Reduction Act.
Budget 2023 introduced the Ontario Made Manufacturing Investment Tax Credit, which CME has regularly advocated for, including at a recent roundtable of manufacturing CEOs with the Minister of Finance Peter Bethlenfalvy.
“Manufacturing is no longer an afterthought in provincial budgets, it is a centrepiece. With this consequential Budget, Ontario establishes a leading position among provinces in spurring an industrial resurgence,” said Dennis Darby, president and CEO of CME. “This will ensure that more Ontario companies, sectors and communities can participate in the long-term prosperity the sector has to offer.”
CME noted that the budget has a renewed focus on tackling labour shortages with additional funding for the essential Skills Development Fund (SDF), including a new capital stream to support training centres. The SDF has funded several CME initiatives, including Women in Manufacturing training, Lean training, and Health and Safety training.
The association also considers the increased funding for the Ontario Nominee Program as interesting. The recent doubling of immigrant levels under the program is a welcome sign that the province is gaining more control over its ability to attract the workers it needs for the future, it says.
CME was pleased to see an ongoing focus on reducing costs and enhancing competitiveness for Ontario manufacturers, building on past policies like the reduction of WSIB premiums, which continues to deliver ongoing savings for CME members.
According to the association, noteworthy commitments in the budget included reviewing the tax system and working with municipalities and utilities to create serviceable industrial sites, in support of Ontario’s competitiveness in attracting high-value advanced manufacturing projects. This sets the stage for productive discussions ahead, as part of a promised Advanced Manufacturing Council.
“As happy as we are about this Budget, competition from other countries is fierce. The world is realizing the immense value manufacturing brings to advanced economies. As the province moves to establish a more comprehensive industrial strategy, we remain ready to provide meaningful and practical advice, grounded in day-to-day realities our members continue to face,” concluded Darby.