Budget 2021: LNCC Urging Plan to Stimulate the Economy with a Focus on Labrador
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JUNE 2, 2021
Budget 2021: LNCC Urging Plan to Stimulate to Economy with a Focus on Labrador
HAPPY VALLEY-GOOSE BAY – The Labrador North Chamber of Commerce (LNCC) says Budget 2021 offers support across most sectors but urges an economic stimulus approach with a focus on Labrador.
“We are optimistic government will move forward with reducing debt expenses, deficit and borrowing,” says LNCC Chairperson Andy Turnbull. “But addressing debt needs to be balanced with stimulating the economy. Government should look to Labrador to explore growth sectors and capitalize on its significant economic potential.”
Government has committed to short-term investments across various sectors, but a long-term vision for the province with actionable, practical investments to improve service delivery and attract highly skilled talent is key.
“We strongly urge government to focus on attracting skilled talent to the province,” says Turnbull. “We had hoped for a long-term vision with a stronger focus on Labrador to ensure our delivery model drives positive outcomes and our workforce offers higher talent and expertise.”
While Labrador represents less than 10 per cent of the province’s population, it contributes a high amount to the provincial GDP through mining and exploration, military, fishery, energy, and infrastructure development, and offers widespread expertise with regional needs at the forefront.
“The delivery of public services can be done with greater sensitivity to regional requirements,” says Turnbull. “Consolidation of services such as healthcare and education with a focus on improved delivery models can lead to cost-savings, better service and better outcomes. Labrador is a pioneer in telehealth and is well positioned to respond to the regional services required. Consolidation should not mean the movement of services outside of Labrador.”
Partnerships are key for businesses in Labrador, and the region has seen huge partnership success in aviation, tourism, shipping, agriculture, green energy, and resource development. The LNCC will continue to work with government to help build stronger partnerships with organizations and Indigenous communities across Labrador.
“Our diverse cultures and experiences are powerful forces in innovating growth,” says Turnbull. “Labrador must be part of identifying solutions for the fiscal change that is required. The perspective of doing business in remote areas is key to developing a budget that represents the entire province.”
An efficient and affordable transportation network and comprehensive transportation strategy is vital for Labradorians, and the importance of the completion of the Trans Labrador Highway is an economic driver for the province that cannot be understated.
“We are disappointed the paving of the Trans Labrador Highway will take another two construction seasons,” says Turnbull. “Completing the construction sooner will bring significant economic impact to the region. From the delivery of goods to tourism development, the highway will further drive tourism experiences and increase visitation to our region and world-class attractions like Battle Harbour and the UNESCO Red Bay National Historic Site for Canadians traveling within COVID-safe regions.”
This budget requires decisive action, and we must focus on operating more efficiently. The LNCC will continue to engage with government to ensure opportunities and ideas from its members and the Labrador business community are considered.
Julianne Griffin, CEO
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