Avoid complacency, local businesses told

Mark Brownlee
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Canada's economy will fall behind other countries if businesses and governments don't take steps to improve on competitiveness and innovation, the head of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce told local business leaders Thursday.

Perrin Beatty is president and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.

“We’ve become complacent, even as our ability to earn our prosperity slides into greater jeopardy,” said Perrin Beatty, the organization’s president and CEO. “While we’ve been congratulating ourselves for emerging from the recession less damaged than others, we’re not noticing that other countries grew.”

Canadian companies increasingly can’t compete “in their own backyard” against foreign businesses, he said, a sign the country is struggling to compete against up-and-coming economies such as China’s.

Mr. Beatty, a former federal cabinet minister, recommended policies be changed in a number of areas to help shake the country out of its complacency.

This includes the development of news skills, making it easier for immigrants to get jobs in their fields and changing the education system so that there’s a better matching of the programs to the need employers have to them.

Mr. Beatty was the keynote speaker at the Mayor’s Breakfast Series, co-hosted by OBJ and the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce.

Organizations: Breakfast Series, Ottawa Chamber of Commerce

Geographic location: China

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