Related News: "Innovation and Competitiveness"

Date September 16, 2015 Related Issues

Reforming Canada’s corporate tax system would help companies grow and create jobs, report says

Eliminating distortions in Canada’s business tax system would encourage small firms to grow, promote job creation and strengthen Canada’s ability to compete in the global economy, a new report says.

The report, by world-renowned tax policy expert Jack Mintz, finds that Canada’s current business tax system contains significant imbalances that favour some companies over others and discourage entrepreneurs from pursuing growth.

By reforming the corporate tax system to make it more neutral, governments could give themselves room to lower the general business tax rate without reducing total tax revenues, the paper says.

The Canadian Council of Chief Executives commissioned the report to help guide its thinking on tax policy and Canada’s global competitiveness. The CEO Council is a not-for-profit, non-partisan organization composed of the chief executives and entrepreneurs of Canada’s leading enterprises. Copies of Dr. Mintz’s report are available here.

“Lower corporate taxes should go hand-in-hand with a drive to make the tax system more neutral among business activities and among small and large firms,” argues Dr. Mintz, who is currently President’s Fellow at the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy. “Tax neutrality puts the decisions on which projects offer the best return into the hands of business rather … Read more »

Date June 25, 2015 Related Issues

Canada must act now to conclude the Trans-Pacific Partnership

Yesterday, President Obama received authority from the U.S. Congress to finish the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. Canada must seize the opportunity to work with TPP partners to conclude the deal, say leading Canadian business and trade associations. Canada must not be left behind.

Representing businesses of all sizes and sectors across the country, the group calls on all federal parties to support the comprehensive trade agreement, which would give Canadian businesses improved access to rapidly growing markets, update existing trade relationships and open trade with new partners.

“The Asia Pacific region is becoming a key driver of global trade and economic growth. The TPP represents a historic opportunity to diversify Canada’s exports to Asia and generate jobs through growing trade and investment. Canada needs to be at the negotiating table, not on the outside looking in,” said The Honourable John Manley, President and CEO of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.

The full statement can be read here: Canada must act now to conclude the Trans-Pacific Partnership

Together, the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance, the Canadian Council of Chief Executives, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, the Canadian Intellectual Property Council and the Canadian Services Coalition represent hundreds Read more »

Large firms need to do more to help young entrepreneurs, business leader says

Established Canadian companies should play a more active role in helping innovative young entrepreneurs realize their dreams, one of Atlantic Canada’s best-known business leaders says.

“Entrepreneurial risk-takers and trailblazers are the backbone of a strong, flexible and innovative country,” John Risley, President of Clearwater Fine Foods Inc., says in an essay published today by the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.

The essay – The virtuous cycle: why large firms should nurture young entrepreneurs – was co-written by Julia Deans, Chief Executive Officer of Futurpreneur Canada, a national non-profit organization that assists aspiring young business owners. Mr. Risley chairs the group’s Board of Directors.

In the paper, Mr. Risley and Ms. Deans argue that economic and demographic conditions in Canada are ripe for the adoption of a proactive strategy to support and encourage the growth of a vibrant entrepreneurial culture.

They point out that over the next decade, as many as half of all small business owners over 45 will retire.

Meanwhile, signs indicate that an increasing number of young Canadians are more interested in starting their own companies than trusting their futures to an uncertain job market.

“If we all do more to encourage young people to pursue their entrepreneurial … Read more »

With budget balanced, it’s time to focus on Canada’s economic future, business leaders say

Having fulfilled its commitment to balance the budget, the government’s top priority should be a pro-growth agenda that ensures Canada’s continued success in a volatile and challenging global economy, the Canadian Council of Chief Executives said today.

“The recent fall in oil prices is just one example of the risks facing Canada’s economy,” said The Honourable John Manley, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.

“Balanced budgets give governments the ability to respond in the event of unexpected shocks. But eliminating red ink is not enough to ensure Canada’s long-term prosperity. The next step is to implement a comprehensive strategy for economic growth, increased business investment and job creation.”

The CEO Council is the senior voice of Canada’s business community, representing 150 chief executives and leading entrepreneurs in all sectors and regions of the country.

Mr. Manley highlighted three key elements of an agenda for long-term prosperity:

A tax system that rewards growth.  Canada’s current tax system is overly complex and imposes high compliance costs on companies and individuals. As Canadian tax expert Jack Mintz has pointed out, it also encourages firms to stay small. A smarter approach would be to reward companies that expand, … Read more »

Innovation and technology will increase return on investment with workplace training, report shows

Canadian companies must act to take greater advantage of new technologies to deliver better workplace education and training, and to drive competitiveness and productivity, according to a new report by Accenture in collaboration with the Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE).

Increasing the Return on Talent Development for Canadian Companies was developed as part of a multi-year CCCE initiative on jobs and skills for the 21st century which, in part, encourages Canadian employers to prioritize workplace learning and development to drive competitiveness.

“This report is a call to action for Canadian companies to strive for better outcomes when training employees, and underscores the critical importance of spending training dollars wisely,” said Danielle Francis, Human Capital lead for Financial Services at Accenture in Canada.

The report calls on more employers to consider the advantages of innovative “smart learning systems” that provide access to knowledge, anytime and anywhere. Often, these methods are more effective than classroom-based training while also costing less on a per-employee basis.

The report found that Canadian firms are at different levels of maturity when it comes to talent development capabilities. Some companies rely on traditional and relatively costly classroom-based instruction, while others are deploying advanced learning strategies that … Read more »

Canadian employers launch national initiative on workplace learning and development

Canadian employers need to prioritize workplace learning and development to ensure their competitiveness in the rapidly changing global economy, a group of prominent Canadian business leaders said today.

At a conference in Ottawa titled “Creating Opportunities: Jobs and Skills for the 21st Century”, the business leaders said they hope to foster a national conversation about the importance of employer-sponsored skills development.

“Canadian employers as a group can and should do more to ensure that Canadians have the education and skills needed to find and keep good jobs now and in the future,” said Elyse Allan, President and Chief Executive Officer of GE Canada, who is spearheading the initiative on behalf of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.

“Investing in workplace learning benefits individuals and organizations alike. Employees gain job satisfaction, security, and better pay. For employers, training represents a valuable recruitment and retention tool and a driver of competitiveness and innovation.”

A recent Conference Board of Canada study suggested that, on average, Canadian employers spend roughly two-thirds as much as their U.S. counterparts on employee training and education.

The Conference Board based that conclusion on data from 115 organizations across the country. Roughly half were government departments, Crown corporations, … Read more »

Business leaders and post-secondary presidents launch Business/Higher Education Roundtable to improve school-to-work transitions

In a move aimed at strengthening cooperation between employers and educators, a group representing some of Canada’s largest companies and post-secondary institutions today announced the creation of the Canadian Business/Higher Education Roundtable.

Composed of 27 leaders from the private sector, universities, colleges and polytechnics, the Roundtable will focus its efforts on helping young Canadians transition from education to the workplace. An equal priority will be to seek greater synergies between research and teaching on campuses and the needs of Canadian employers as they adapt to the economy of the future.

“Canada is one of the few industrialized countries that do not have a national forum for dialogue between large employers and post-secondary institutions,” said Tom Jenkins, one of 13 business leaders who are founding members of the Roundtable. “The creation of this Roundtable marks a significant step forward. It will provide a common space for collaboration, networking and the exchange of good practices that will benefit all Canadians.”

The Roundtable will have three co-chairs: Mr. Jenkins, who is Chair of OpenText Corporation; Arvind Gupta, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of British Columbia; and Anne Sado, President of George Brown College and Chair of Polytechnics Canada.

His Excellency the Right … Read more »

Abacus survey wordcloud Young Canadians are more optimistic than pessimistic about the job market, survey finds

Most think their generation will live as well or better than their parents’ generation

Young Canadians are significantly more optimistic than pessimistic about the job market and, by a two-to-one margin, believe their generation will enjoy a standard of living higher than that of their parents, according to a new Abacus Data survey of Canadians aged 18 to 35.

Close to half (45%) of young Canadians say they are optimistic about the job market for people such as themselves, compared with 20% who are pessimistic. However, opinions on the job market itself are mixed. Asked to describe employment opportunities for people like them who may be looking for work in the area where they live, 48% said they were excellent or good, while 51% said the situation is poor or very poor. Those living in the Prairies and Quebec were more positive about the job market than those in BC, Ontario or Atlantic Canada.

Respondents aged 18 to 24 were somewhat more optimistic about the job market than those aged 25 to 35. Among those currently pursuing post-secondary education, respondents studying in information technology, health, business and engineering/science fields were more optimistic than those in arts or social science programs … Read more »

Media advisory: Business leaders convene conference on jobs and skills in Ottawa

The Canadian Council of Chief Executives will host “Creating Opportunities: Jobs & Skills for the 21st Century”, a conference bringing together business leaders, government officials, educators and young people from across the country, on April 13, 2015, at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa. The conference will explore ways of improving education and training to ensure a brighter future for young Canadians.

Speakers will include:

  • Elyse Allan, President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Canada
  • James Bessen, author of Learning by Doing: The Real Connection between Innovation, Wages and Wealth
  • David Coletto, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Abacus Data
  • William A. Downe, Chief Executive Officer, BMO Financial Group
  • Brian Ferguson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Cenovus Energy
  • His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada
  • Trish Hennessy, Director, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Sebastian Thrun, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Udacity, and Founder, Google X.
  • Stephen Toope, Director, Munk School of Global Affairs
  • Anne Sado, President, George Brown College

The conference agenda is available here. Attendance is by invitation only but most sessions will be available via live webcast.

Over the past 18 months the CEO Council has commissioned a series of papers and essays … Read more »

Competency frameworks could be the answer to skill mismatches in Canada, report says

A pan-Canadian system of evaluating and certifying competence would help ensure workers have the skills needed to do their jobs well and make the country a stronger international competitor, a report concludes.

The report, Competence is the Best Credential, advocates for the adoption of a competency certification system similar to those widely used in Europe, some regions of the United States, and other countries around the world.

Taking into account both theoretical knowledge and practical experience, competency frameworks set out clearly the skills, knowledge and attributes workers need to perform specific jobs. The report notes that while some institutions and industry associations have begun to develop their own competency frameworks, overall “Canada lags behind.”

“Canadian stakeholders can benefit from the experience of other countries,” the report states. “By learning what works, and knowing what practices to avoid, a Canadian system could be the answer to our widely reported skills mismatches.”

The report was the result of collaboration between the Canada West Foundation and the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.

“We have more certificates, diplomas and degrees than ever before, and still have huge skill mismatches in our labour market,” says Janet Lane, Director of the Foundation’s Centre for Human … Read more »

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