BC Chamber of Commerce 2008 AGM

BC Chamber of Commerce Express Newsletter - October 2009 Issue


BC Chamber in the Headlines

Policy Successes

Chamber News

Provincial News

National News


BC Chamber in the Headlines

back to top

Policy Successes

POLICY SUCCESS HIGHLIGHT: Province to Form Local Government Election Task Force

The Province will form a special joint task force to modernize local government election rules. This task force introduces the possibility that issues such as the current election cycle of three years and restoring voting rights for business and industry that pay property taxes will be revisited.

This special joint task force will be tasked with undertaking deliberations and presenting recommendations on writing a new Local Government Election Act. It will be stand-alone legislation that will modernize election rules and create a single, provincewide electoral process for local government elections. This new act will designate the chief electoral officer of British Columbia as the independent supervisor, administrator and enforcer of a common local government election process.

Read the full news release here…

2nd Amtrak Train service between Seattle & Vancouver has begun

Ahead of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympics Winter Games, Washington State Gov. Chris Gregoire joined British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell in Seattle to celebrate the start of the long-awaited second Amtrak Cascades train service to Vancouver. View article...

BC Skills Connect Program Receives an Additional $12 Million from Provincial & Federal Governments

The B.C. and federal governments are investing $12 million for the continued delivery of the BC Skills Connect program, which has successfully helped more than 5,500 immigrants connect with jobsthat use their foreign qualifications and work experience.

Established in July 2006 as a three-year pilot, the Skills Connect program has consistently exceeded its targets, helping 1,587 skilled immigrants connect with jobs in 2007-08, with 226 placed in the health sector and over 2,100 helped in 2008-09, including 500 in the health sector. View article...

More Funding for Marketing Wood Products in China

Forestry Innovation Investment (FII) has increased funding for China marketing by 17 per cent and sharpened the focus of its joint market development strategy with industry and the federal government.

Total funding through FII has been increased to $5.06 million in 2009-10, up 17 per cent or $726,000 over the previous year (2008-09). Combined with funding from industry and the Government of Canada, more than $13 million is being directed to China marketing activities in 2009-10, up from $8.6 million in 2008-09. View article...

Update on $20 Million Funding for Rural Roads

British Columbia is on track to complete $20 million in targeted upgrades to more than 200 Forest Service roads that serve as crucial transportation links, improving travel and safety conditions for residents in about 70 rural communities. View article...

Western Provinces Announce Joint Support for Open Skies

B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell, Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach, and Saskatchewan Minister of Enterprise Ken Cheveldayoff signed an unprecedented declaration affirming Western support for Open Skies. View article...

back to top

Chamber News

Upcoming Event

The next Cabinet Ministers Breakfast Series with the Honourable Kevin Falcon, Minister of Health Services, will be held November 23, 2009. Watch for further details coming soon!

Congratulations to the Newly Accredited Delta Chamber of Commerce

At the Canadian Chamber of Commerce Annual General Meeting in Victoria, British Columbia, the Delta Chamber of Commerce distinguished itself by being the only Chamber in Western Canada to achieve accreditation in 2009.

To achieve accreditation, a chamber must meet minimum standards in critical areas, including areas of governance, operations, membership programming, policy and advocacy and strategic planning.

Accreditation is aimed at continuous operational improvement and standards of local chambers of commerce and an elevation of their profile across the country as effective and well-managed organizations.

Chambers of commerce and boards of trade that are successful in achieving the requirements for accreditation are recognized each year at the Canadian Chamber of Commerce Annual General Meeting.

For more information on accreditation, click here.

back to top

Provincial News

Government Releases Preliminary Transition Rules for Move to HST in 2010

The BC Government has released proposed transition rules to guide businesses and consumers in the handling of the move to HST in July, 2010.  An overview of the rules is available in the Province’s news release and Backgrounder, available here

You can also get more in-depth HST information on the government’s website at www.gov.bc.ca/hst
Additional Reminder:  The BC Chamber’s backgrounder on HST and links to further information is on our website here.

Gibsons Named World’s Best Town

Gibsons has been distinguished as one of the most livable communities in the world this week by the International Awards for Liveable Communities, winning in the category of communities with populations of fewer than 20,000.

Read the full story here…

B.C., Washington State Partner on Cross-Border Opportunities

Premier Gordon Campbell and Washington Governor Chris Gregoire have signed a framework agreement that will see B.C. and Washington co-operate on transportation and other initiatives, including developing a shared vision for high-speed rail service and jointly advocating for direct harbour-to-harbour air service between Vancouver and Seattle.

Read the full news release here...

Olympic Transportation Update

VANOC and its transportation partners, represented in the Olympic and Paralympic Transportation Team, have released an update on 2010 Winter Games transportation plans.  To learn more visit www.vancouver2010.com/gameplan   for the latest information, including the following:

  • Key dates and details about when the transportation plan will go into effect in the region
  • Details for travel on the Sea to Sky Highway, including on the Olympic Bus Network
  • Overview of transportation plans for the Paralympic Winter Games
  • Tips and advice for the public on planning for travel in 2010

Vancouver 2010 Olympic & Paralympic Games Asset Sales Opportunities

Following the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the furniture, equipment and supplies acquired during the planning and hosting of the games will be available to the public. The VANOC Asset Disposal Team is currently focused on the large volume pre-Games sale of these assets.

This advance sale is a unique opportunity for organizations to view the asset listing, and have the opportunity to secure their desired items before the Games. Procured from many exceptional sponsors and retailers such as The Hudson’s Bay Company, Acer, Samsung, GE, Panasonic, Rona, Sleep Country and many more; the VANOC asset inventory spans many categories and functions, which include:

  • Office furnishings (filing cabinets, desks, tables, lighting, task chairs etc.)
  • Athletes Village furnishings (leather sofas, coffee tables, bedside tables, lamps, beds etc.)
  • Technology items (computers, laptops, keyboards, monitors, AV carts, televisions etc.)
  • Kitchen appliances/household goods (microwaves, coffee makers, dishware, refrigerators etc.)
  • Traffic/crowd control (pylons, temporary fencing, barricades etc.)
  • Temporary furnishings (folding chairs, folding tables, storage bins, shelving etc.)
  • Equipment (snow blowers, furniture dollies, pallet jacks, hand tools etc.)
  • And much more….

Organizations considering the purchase of new furnishings, equipment or other items that may be included in our extensive inventory are encouraged to express their interest in the VANOC Asset Sales Program as soon as possible, as items will be committed on a first-come basis.

To inquire about the complete Vancouver 2010 asset inventory contact:

Amanda Bondar
Asset Disposal Planner

Get moving for Healthy Workplace Month (October 5 – November 1)

Are you interested in getting your workplace more physically active? Then sign up with the BC Recreation and Parks Association (BCRPA) and get ACTIVE!

In honour of Healthy Workplace Month, BCRPA is inviting you to create and implement healthy workplace activities.  Participants will receive a selection of free resources, as well as the opportunity to be acknowledged in a congratulatory advertisement in the Vancouver Sun.  For more information, or to register with BCRPA for Healthy Workplace Month, click here.

China Engineering & Technology Expo

Vancouver Convention Centre
October 19 – 21, 2009
Free to all BC businesses

The Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), in partnership with the BC Ministry of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development, will be holding a 3-day engineering and technology trade exposition, “China Engineering & Technology Expo” at the Vancouver Convention Centre from Monday, October 19 – Wednesday, October 21, 2009. The expo will be free of charge to BC companies.

For the first time in North America, 150-200 Chinese delegates, representing 36 companies, will be exhibiting at the expo, led by Vice Minister Chen Jian.  The exhibiting Chinese companies include leading professional engineering enterprises ranking among the world’s top 225 international contractors and showcase building, oil prospecting, chemical engineering, water conservancy and power construction, communications, infrastructure construction (such as roads, bridges and railways), nonferrous metal, electricity and electric mechanical industry, navigation construction, tunnel construction, harbour construction, and the metallurgical industry.

For more information, contact the Asia Pacific Business Centre at the BC Ministry of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development:

Asia Pacific Business Centre
1-888-880-ASIA (2742)

Industry Training Authority Releases Three-year Strategic Plan

At the end of September, ITA releases a new three-year strategic plan, designed to enable ITA to respond assertively to changing economic conditions.

The plan’s framework rests on three pillars that outline the Authority’s vision for BC’s industry training system:

  • “Individuals are recognized for their skills and knowledge and have opportunities to develop to their full potential;
  • Employers and industry have the skilled workers they need to be successful; and
  • The industry training system makes a vital contribution to BC’s prosperity.”

The plan can be downloaded from the ITA website at here

back to top

National News

Minister of Finance Announces Members of Advisory Committee on Canadian Securities Regulator

The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, has announced the appointment of the members of the Advisory Committee of Participating Provinces and Territories to the Canadian Securities Transition Office, which is leading Canada's efforts to establish a Canadian securities regulator.
Read the full news release here…

Update on Economic Action Plan in BC

The Government of Canada, through PWGSC, is investing over $8 million to repair and renovate government facilities, including federal buildings in Port Alberni, Prince George, Victoria, and Metro Vancouver. Projects include roof replacements, electrical repairs, exterior mortar work, paving and fire protection upgrades.

Read the full news release here…


back to top