BC Chamber releases Policy & Positions Manual ahead of new BC government taking office

In the News

VANCOUVER, July 13, 2017 - The BC Chamber of Commerce has released its 2017-2018 Policy & Positions Manual outlining its business advocacy priorities for the upcoming year, as defined by its province-wide network.

“The BC Chamber is releasing its 2017-2018 Policy & Positions Manual on the coattails of a new government,” said Val Litwin, President & CEO of the BC Chamber of Commerce. “We will be sending copies of the Policy & Positions Manual to each MLA taking office so they may familiarize themselves with the issues impacting businesses across BC and learn more about what’s on BC’s mind.”
 
2017 marked a banner year for the BC Chamber with 64 policies submitted and supported by 47 individual chambers, including the Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce and Tumbler Ridge Chamber of Commerce who submitted policies for the first time. This is an increase of 31% in chamber participation and an increase of over 12% in overall policy resolutions submitted, which truly exemplifies the growth of engagement in BC’s largest and most broadly-based business network.
 
This year the BC Chamber championed a policy in partnership with the Young Entrepreneur Leadership Launchpad (YELL Canada), on Protecting and Enabling Youth Entrepreneurship and Incorporation Under the Age of Majority”.
 
“Taking their cue from the Mark Zuckerberg’s of their generation, more and more entrepreneurial-minded youth are taking risks to start their own companies,” said Litwin. “This policy offers a viable solution that allows business owners under the age of majority to participate meaningfully in their own company, while also ensuring that the proper protections are in place for both youth and the general public.”
 
Policies submitted to the floor at the AGM are rigorously debated and discussed by Chamber members representing every nook and cranny of BC, and must receive support from at least two-thirds of the membership to be voted into force.
 
Other notable policies submitted and passed by the Chamber membership include:

  • Mobilizing Rural Investment Capital (Submitted by the Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce)
    • This policy centres around the recommendation that the Provincial Government create a BC Community Economic and Development Investment Fund (CEDIF) program, which would enable individuals within BC communities to pool their capital together and invest in local for-profit entities.
  • Port and Major Airport Share Capitalization (Submitted by the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade)
    • The Ministry of Finance is investigating the “share capitalization” of Canada’s ports and major airports, however BC’s Chambers recommend that the Federal government maintain a competitive and responsibly governed transportation industry by retaining the current governance model for Canada’s ports and major airports.
  • BC Ferries Route 10 and the Northern B.C. Tourism Economy (Submitted by the Prince Rupert Chamber of Commerce)
    • Northern B.C.’s tourism economy is significantly affected by BC Ferries Inside Passage sailings during the summer season, therefore the BC Chamber is recommending the provincial government work with stakeholder groups to increase the window of summer sailings to include the first two weeks in June and the last two weeks of September.
  • Canada-China Trade Tariff Gap (Submitted by the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce)
    • Canadian companies exporting to China can often face hefty tariffs, freight and agency fees, whereas Chinese products face no such tariffs when imported into Canada. This policy is recommending that the Federal Government work with the with Canadian business community and the relevant stakeholders to develop a trade agreement with China.
  • Integrating Robotics and Automation into the Regular B.C. School Curriculum (Submitted by the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce)
    • The job sector is rapidly evolving with innovations that are transforming our economy before our eyes. This policy recommends the Provincial government increase and maintain education funding for mechanics, computer coding, mechatronics, and related subjects in public schools to ensure that the B.C. economy remains competitive in an ever-changing technological economic environment.

Click here to view the 2017-2018 Policy & Positions Manual.

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About the BC Chamber

The BC Chamber is the province’s largest and most broadly-based business organization driving insights to its partners, government and Chamber network. With 36,000 members hailing from every nook and cranny of the province, the BC Chamber knows what’s on BC’s mind.

Media Contact

Neha Prihar
Communications Coordinator
BC Chamber of Commerce
Direct: 604-638-8114
nprihar@bcchamber.org