Ontario competitiveness consultation report released

Archived Release

Ontario competitiveness consultation report released

TORONTO, Jan. 15 /CNW/ - Ted Chudleigh, MPP for Halton and Parliamentary Assistant to Economic Development and Trade Minister Bob Runciman, today tabled his report on Ontario's competitiveness in a global market place.
The report, Keeping Ontario Industries Competitive in the Global Marketplace, is the culmination of months of discussions with representatives from the chemical and construction sectors, and roundtable meetings with experts in Ontario and the United States to discuss the issue of access to early-stage risk capital for emerging high-growth firms.
"Ontario must be competitive to maintain a strong economy," Chudleigh said. "I believe the recommendations from these consultations and discussions with a number of Ontario key sectors will help us to raise our level of competitiveness in the global marketplace."
Runciman announced that the Ontario government is prepared to move immediately on several key recommendations contained in the report by:

- taking a leadership role in advocating a northern natural gas pipeline
route through Canada, which would use existing infrastructure in
Alberta;
- working with the construction industry on how to set up an advisory
council;
- investing $100,000, through the Prosperity Demonstration Fund, to
support the formation of the Toronto Angel Group (TAG). Coordinated by
the Toronto Venture Group, TAG will screen business opportunities and
introduce entrepreneurs to angel investors; and
- hosting an Angel Investment Forum in April 2002.

"Dow Chemical was very encouraged to see the Ontario government undertake this review and recommend actions to address the competitiveness of the chemical industry in Ontario, said Steve Bolt, Director, Eastern Ontario Operations, Dow Chemical Canada Inc. "The seven recommendations for the chemical sector cover, at a high level, key components of what needs to be done in the near future to advance the viability and ensure the growth of this extremely vital and very competitive sector. Dow is very willing to get involved in the details of implementation of these recommendations."
"The proposed construction industry advisory council will provide a significant framework to support the industry on a number of fronts, which include bringing stakeholders together to address competitiveness issues and also to share good news accomplishments and best practices," said Gary Robertson, President, Council of Ontario Construction Associations.
"Toronto Venture Group congratulates Mr. Ted Chudleigh and the Ontario government for the research conducted with angel investors and growth company entrepreneurs. We fully endorse and support the recommendations he has made to the Government of Ontario to improve access to risk capital for emerging growth firms. It is important to support the growth and maturity of the angel investor community and encourage them to provide the fuel to help emerging companies grow faster," said Karen A. Grant, Executive Director, Toronto Venture Group.
The report includes 23 recommendations to help increase competitiveness by removing obstacles, stimulating new investment and entrepreneurial opportunities, and enabling business to become more successful.
"The Ontario government constantly seeks new ways to ensure our businesses can attract, maintain and retain investment and jobs," said Runciman. "By moving forward immediately on some key recommendations, our government is working to ensure our province maintains a vibrant capital market - a market that is essential to Ontario's economic expansion and international competitiveness."

Disponible en fran├žais
For further information: Lara Coombs, P.A. Chudleigh's Office, (416) 325-8679, (416) 578-2290 (cell)