Increased immigration levels, investments in infrastructure and removal of protectionist policies in the U.S. are measures Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) is calling on from the federal government to ease supply chain issues.
The recommendations were made during Monday’s National Supply Chain Summit. It was put together by the federal government to address supply chain issues. A four-hour session was hosted by Transport Minister Omar Alghabra, who was joined by International Trade Minister Mary Ng, Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne, Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough, Labour Minister Seamus O’Regan and Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau.
CME President and CEO Dennis Darby was one of more than 30 representatives from the manufacturing, agriculture and business industries.
“Manufacturers have been feeling supply chain pressures for months now as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Darby said. “Omicron, natural disasters in B.C. and the trucker vaccine mandate have all added to the crisis. We applaud the government for sitting down with industry to hammer out fixes to these problems.”
He asked the government to immediately:
The government strike 60-day sector-specific tasks forces that will identify supply chain problems, their solutions, and get the government to commit to implementing the recommendations;
Address all transportation bottlenecks and avoid policies that will aggravate them further;
Speed up immigration into Canada to fill vacant jobs in manufacturing and other key sectors;
Government assistance for manufacturers still struggling with the impacts of supply chain disruptions
Longer term, the group urged the government to accelerate investments in critical trade infrastructure, aggressively increase economic class immigration targets and work closely with the U.S. to remove protectionist policies that hurt integrated manufacturing supply chains.
It was announced by Transport Canada that the summit will be followed by a series of regional and industry sessions to continue the dialogue. Furthermore, a new Supply Chain Task Force will be created. It will consult with industry experts to make recommendations regarding short and long-term actions around Canada’s supply chain.