Toronto, November 4, 2021 – Dennis Darby, President & CEO of Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME), issued the following statement in response to the Government of Ontario’s 2021 Fall Economic Statement.
“CME applauds the provincial government for demonstrating a commitment to manufacturing and taking initial steps to improve business competitiveness for our sector, support innovation, and create more manufacturing jobs.”
“We have long advocated for a focus on upskilling and attracting more young people to the sector, procurement reform to boost domestic manufacturing capacity, and infrastructure supports, all of which are priorities in Budget 2021.”
Some key measures in Budget 2021 supported by Ontario’s manufacturers include:
- Investment supports
- $40 million in an advanced manufacturing and innovation competitiveness investment fund
- $25 million in an agri-food processing investment fund
- The creation of the ‘Building Ontario Business Initiative’ to realize Supply Ontario’s goal of using public procurement to foster local economic growth and manufacturing
- Skills and training
- $90 million for a revised skilled trades strategy to boost the number of and skills of skilled trade workers
- Implementing the Women’s Economic Task Force recommendations, with a focus on supporting training of women in skilled trades
- Critical infrastructure
- $1 Billion into the development of the Ring of Fire to build critical minerals supply chains
- Commitment to have all of Ontario covered with high-speed internet by 2025 and further investment in highways and public transit, including the new 413 and continued expansion of mass transit in Toronto
- Lowering business costs
- Property assessments for the 2022 and 2023 tax years will continue to be based on the same valuation date that was used for 2021
“While we greatly appreciate these initial steps, more aggressive actions are needed to ensure manufacturing remains a key driving force for growth and prosperity for all Ontarians.”
“As we look ahead to the 2022 spring budget, CME is not only urging the government to introduce a comprehensive advanced manufacturing strategy, but for the support of CME’s 2% challenge. This challenge centers on attracting at least two percent of the annual manufacturing investment made in the OECD over the next decade. In Ontario, this equates to about $18 billion in annual investment in the manufacturing sector. This investment would yield transformative results in creating new products, improving productivity, and increasing the competitiveness of Ontario’s manufacturers globally,” Darby concluded.
- The manufacturing sector represents more than 10% of Canada’s gross domestic product.
- Manufacturers directly support more than 1.7 million jobs in Canada.
- The total manufacturing sales in 2019 surpassed $685 B.