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Manufacturing CEOs tell party leaders to invest strategically

Facing unprecedented economic volatility and the possibility of the U.S. financial crisis spilling north of the bor...


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September 29, 2008 by Canadian Plastics

Facing unprecedented economic volatility and the possibility of the U.S. financial crisis spilling north of the border, Canada’s industrial leaders want a federal government that will manage the economy “prudently,” and make investments that generate long-term value for the Canadian economy. The recommendations are a result of the survey conducted last week by Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters.”Canadian business leaders are worried about the impacts of the U.S. financial crisis on their business,” said CME president Jayson Myers. “Looking ahead, they want a federal government that will make strategic investments and be fiscally responsible as we navigate through this uncertain economic time. Canada’s manufacturers and exporters are bearing the brunt of the seismic shifts in the global economy.”According to the 1,003 CEOs polled by CME, high commodity costs and the slowdown in the U.S. economy currently pose the most serious challenges for their business. The appreciation of the Canadian dollar, soaring energy costs, and weakening customer demand in Canadian markets pose significant but manageable challenges for most businesses. Now, tightening credit conditions are also becoming a problem, with close to a third of CEOs saying that this is now a significant but manageable challenge for their business.”Manufacturers and exporters are making a clarion call for economic leadership,” said Myers. “Our CEOs are telling us that the federal government needs to manage economic policy in the same way that they manage their businesses — set a clear direction for economic growth, encourage strategic investments in productive technologies, innovation and workforce skills, improve efficiency and stop doing things that add little or no value to the economy, and always keep your eyes on te bottom line.”More than 82 per cent of the respondents want the federal government to place a high priority on the control of government spending, while 67 per cent say that government should provide better tax incentives for businesses that invest in technology, training and innovation. Two-thirds of respondents place a high priority on the government maintaining a balanced budget.”The message for all party leaders in this election campaign is be responsible and focus on policies that create wealth before you spend it,” said Myers.