Ontario Chamber of Commerce

Ontario Chamber of Commerce

November 12, 2007 07:00 ET

Ontario Economic Leaders Say Infrastructure Deficit Can't Wait: Survey

NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 12, 2007) - Collective action and stewardship of the province's resources, are vital if we're to address some of the key issues facing the Ontario economy and secure a prosperous future. That, according to leaders in business, labour, academia and government.

In a survey of 358 economic leaders from across the province, the Ontario Economic Summit (OES), an initiative of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, gauged the urgency of four key components of stewardship of the economy: infrastructure, competitiveness of Ontario communities, international stewardship in the areas of global health and environmental sustainability and foreign acquisitions of Canadian businesses.

Infrastructure

91% of those surveyed indicated that infrastructure was the most critical issue to be addressed today with roads and transportation considered the most important element (41%), followed by the US/Canada border (19%). Ontario's economic leaders overwhelmingly (80%) believe infrastructure issues will become increasingly important for Ontario's economy in the future and more than half (57%) consider it the responsibility of the public sector.

Community Competitiveness

Infrastructure also rated highly in terms of factors impacting community competitiveness with such things as availability of serviced land, local research and local roads and transportation topping the list. Two key barriers to community competitiveness were identified by respondents: lack of coordination and/or communication between stakeholders (36%) and lack of leadership (30%). 90% of respondents consider community competitiveness to be a joint responsibility between the public and private sector.

Foreign Acquisitions of Canadian Companies

The issue of foreign acquisitions of Canadian companies concerns more than half of all respondents (58%) with no consensus on the solution. 35% believe government should modify the tax regime to allow Canadian owned companies to be more competitive, while 24% believe Canadian companies must develop better long term growth strategies and 19% suggest an increased investment in research & development.

Ontario's International Stewardship Role

On the international front, environmental sustainability was rated as the most important issue by almost half (49%) of Ontario economic leaders, followed by global health at 15%. Ontario's economic leaders expect more organizations to adopt environmentally sustainable practices (84%).

Full survey results will be presented at the Ontario Economic Summit which takes place in Niagara-on-the-Lake from November 13 - 15. The Summit is the foremost forum for influential leaders in the province to share knowledge and insights, and collaboratively seize new opportunities to move the provincial economy forward.

Additional information may be found at www.occ-oes.com including the current agenda and a list of Summit partners and sponsors.

The Ontario Economic Summit is an initiative of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce.

Contact Information

  • Ontario Chamber of Commerce
    Amy Terrill
    W: (416) 482-5222, ext. 241 or C: (416) 605-8205
    amyterrill@occ.on.ca