New reports provide critically important recommendations for building a more secure economy

May 11, 2020

VICTORIA, B.C. - The B.C. Green Caucus welcomes today’s release of the Emerging Economy Task Force report and the final report from Dr. Alan Winter, B.C.'s first Innovation Commissioner. Together these reports provide a roadmap for a cleaner and more prosperous future for B.C.

The B.C. Greens promised to establish both an Innovation Commissioner and an Emerging Economy Task Force in their 2017 election platform, as part of an economic strategy to capitalize on emerging economic opportunities and adapt to global trends. Both are central components of the Confidence and Supply Agreement between the B.C. Green Party Caucus and the B.C. government.

“I thank the task force and Dr. Winter for their important work,” said B.C. Green Party interim leader Adam Olsen, MLA for Saanich North and the Islands. “Both the Innovation Commissioner and the task force are clear: the emerging economy presents major economic opportunities for B.C., but to seize them we cannot continue with status quo thinking. As we begin an economic recovery from COVID-19, our efforts need to be forward-thinking. We must invest in projects that get British Columbians back to work quickly, building the economy we want our children to inherit.”

The Emerging Economy Task Force report was written by a 14-member task force with a broad membership, led by Kathy Kinloch, president of the BC Institute of Technology. The report provides analysis and advice on the trends that will shape our province for the next 10-25 years, including 25 recommendations to position B.C.’s economy for success.

“The task force has made a strong case for building a sustainable and inclusive economy, starting today,” said Sonia Furstenau, MLA for Cowichan Valley. “With the economic hardships endured by British Columbians and the significant challenges facing our economy, government must prioritize long-term planning. The investments we make coming out of the pandemic will set the direction for the coming decade.”

The Innovation Commissioner’s Final Report, Putting Innovation to Work for British Columbia: Growing B.C. Companies, outlines five recommendations focused on helping B.C. companies grow and harnessing innovation to improve all sectors of the economy. Dr. Winter spent two years working to identify the challenges and opportunities in the innovative economy. This report is a culmination of that experience and provides clear advice for strengthening sectors across our economy through innovation.

“Dr. Winter provides expert advice on how to capture the power of innovation and use it to our strategic advantage,” said MLA Furstenau. “To remain competitive and to provide a high quality of life, we need to put a greater focus on innovation across all sectors of our economy. Economic prosperity does not lie in simply continuing raw natural resource exports -- instead, we must add more value to what we produce, build B.C. businesses into our supply chains, and focus on encouraging B.C. companies to stay and grow here.

“We urge the B.C. Government to be a leader in building a low-carbon economy that is more resilient to future challenges and creates more broadly shared prosperity,” said MLA Furstenau. “Our economic recovery from COVID-19 provides a singular opportunity to make this change, and we cannot afford to let it pass us by.”

Links to reports:

Emerging Economy Task Force Final Report<https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/employment-business-and-economic-development/economic-development/emerging-economy-task-force/eetf-final_report-20200511-final.pdf>

Putting Innovation to Work for British Columbia: Growing B.C. Companies<https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/government/final_ic_report_2020.pdf>

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Media contact
JoJo Beattie
Acting Press Secretary
B.C. Green Caucus
+1 250-882-6187 | jojo.beattie@leg.bc.ca

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