As trusted economists and policy advisors to business and government leaders, the Council relies on sound, evidence-based analysis to inform its policy recommendations. Through diligent tracking of BC’s economic performance, we help identify the opportunities and challenges the province must navigate in order to reach its full potential.
Finlayson & Peacock Op-Ed: Housing costs put brakes on migration to B.C. from other provinces (Business in Vancouver)
Over the second half of last year, a surprising development occurred – the net inflow of people moving to B.C. from other provinces fell sharply. The drop showed up in the third quarter and persisted through the final months of 2017. Looking ahead, we suspect that B.C. may receive fewer interprovincial migrants than pundits and policy-makers have been counting on – particularly working-age migrants, as opposed to retirees. If our hunch is correct, employers in B.C. are likely to face more widespread hiring challenges in the years ahead.
Women and Work: An analysis of the changing B.C. labour market
An analysis of the progress made advancing women in the workforce and areas where there is more to do to enable the full participation of women, particularly in light of shifting demographics and labour markets.
Long-Term Downward Trend in Unionization Rates
The unionization rate – sometimes called “union density” – is the share of employees in the workforce who belong to a union. Statistics Canada tracks and reports on “union coverage,” which is a similar concept but also includes workers who are not union members but are covered by a collective agreement.
BC's Net Inflow of Interprovincial Migrants Slows Sharply
Halfway through last year, the net inflow of people moving to BC from other provinces dropped sharply, and the slowing persisted over the rest of 2017. The shift is surprising because it breaks with past migration patterns that usually reflect differing labour market conditions across the country.
Release: BCBC Statement Following May 24 Court Decision on TMX
Greg D'Avignon, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Business Council of British Columbia issued the following statement following today's BC Supreme Court rulings related to the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project:
"Certainty of process is fundamental in any democracy. The Business Council continues to urge the federal and provincial governments to adhere to and support all regulatory processes they have established."
The Changing Face of Asset Ownership in China
China’s economic development continues to have profound implications for the world economy and, as Canada’s gateway to Asia, for British Columbia.
The Rise of China's Top-10%
A by-product of China’s rapid economic rise is that income and wealth have become increasingly concentrated among the top-10% of the population.
Finlayson & Peacock Op-Ed: Alarms ringing over B.C.’s lacklustre productivity performance (Business in Vancouver)
Productivity is the most critical determinant of any economy’s long-term growth potential. It represents the value of goods and services produced, divided by the number of hours needed to produce them.
Productivity increases when businesses invest in new machinery, equipment, technologies and structures, and when workers become better educated and acquire in-demand technical skills. Productivity gains are also realized when additional output is created by doing a better job of combining inputs through the application of fresh ideas, advanced technologies and improved business models. In more productive economies, employees typically receive higher compensation, and governments can obtain the resources needed to provide good public services without having to resort to ruinous levels of taxation.
The Slowing Pace of 'Creative Destruction' in Canada
Creative destruction involves economic renewal or “churn,” whereby innovative new firms and entrepreneurs force outdated firms to exit. Labour and capital are freed and reallocated to better use, in doing so raising productivity and living standards. Canadian data is concerning because it suggests a significant, long-term decline in the rate of economic renewal.
RELEASE: Sue Paish, Q.C. incoming Chair of BCBC
Recognized British Columbia business leader in health, technology and law, Sue Paish Q.C., was elected for a two-year term as Chair of the Business Council of British Columbia on May 1 at the organization’s 52nd Annual General Meeting.
How Do House Prices Affect the Consumer Price Index?
It can seem hard to reconcile the stellar growth in house prices in recent years in Vancouver and some other Canadian urban centres with the modest growth in the CPI.
BC's Manufacturing Sector is Growing...But Faces Competitiveness Challenges
Manufacturing is a growth story for the BC economy over the last 10 years and is punching above its weight in terms of our export portfolio, generating new income for the provincial economy. The latest Policy Perspectives, details economic facts, figures and trends, as well as sectoral breakdowns and cross provincial comparisons, relevant to BC’s $50 billion resource and non-resource manufacturing activities. It also provides some cautionary advice relative to key competitive headwinds facing this element of our economy - which makes up 7% of provincial GDP and over 170,000 jobs.
BCBC on Premier Horgan's "Crisis of Confidence"
"This is no longer about a pipeline project or whether one supports or opposes the legal movement of energy in Canada....this is a referendum on whether British Columbia is open to investment and whether a legal enterprise can, with any confidence, invest, build and operate a business within the province and the country."
PRESENTATION: Economic Update @ COFI by Jock Finlayson
BCBC Chief Policy Officer and Executive Vice President, Jock Finlayson presented on April 5th to the Annual Council of Forest Industries (COFI) convention in Prince George. He discussed the contribution of the B.C. forest industry to the national and provincial economies, as well as competitiveness challenges facing Canada's natural resource sectors and businesses across our diverse economy.
Op-Ed: Trade deal good for B.C. and province's forestry industry (Vancouver Sun)
For over 250 years, British Columbia’s entrepreneurs, skilled workers and communities have contributed to a growing and successful forestry industry. B.C.’s renewable timberland resource has generated economic wealth and improved our collective prosperity for generations, while setting the global benchmark for sustainable forestry practices. Only one per cent of B.C. forest land is harvested annually, with three trees planted for each one that is harvested. Today, the sector is also playing a significant role in reconciliation with Indigenous communities.
We often associate forestry with B.C.’s rural communities, supporting jobs, local businesses, and community facilities. That is entirely true, but it is also one of B.C.’s largest urban employers. People in the Lower Mainland pursue forestry-related careers within an array of small and large businesses working in professional services, transportation, equipment manufacturing and technology among others. Rural and urban, B.C. forestry is a vital contributor to our prosperity.
RELEASE: BCBC welcomes important step in advancing LNG in B.C.
The Business Council of British Columbia today welcomes news of a Fiscal Framework Agreement between the Province of B.C. and LNG Canada. The completion of this agreement signals an important step towards the realization of a major LNG project in the province and the largest infrastructure project in Canada’s history – a project that promises to generate lasting economic benefits for all British Columbians.
Pros and Cons of the NDP's Housing Plan
In Budget 2018, the NDP government unveiled a 30-point housing plan intended to address concerns about housing affordability. We believe that housing policy should be driven by the needs of the local population but there are problems with the government's overall approach.
Finlayson & Peacock Op-Ed: New age of activist governments driving up cost of doing business (Business in Vancouver)
Welcome to a new era of activist government.
In the last two years, both the federal and provincial governments have outlined more ambitious policy agendas. Each has ramped up spending on social services and income support programs, laying the foundations for a larger public sector. The drumbeat of regulatory change has become deafening as governments initiate multiple policy reviews and move to reshape environmental assessment and permitting rules, energy regulations and standards, the legal frameworks governing employment and labour relations, minimum wages, housing market policies, apprenticeships and much else besides.
Women and Work in BC Series: The Rise of the Older Working Woman
This is the sixth in a series of blogs highlighting the economic imperative of addressing gender equity issues across the full spectrum of market domains and organizational settings. The data are derived from a multi-year research project, which we will publish in April 2018.