Rebuilding Domestic Industrial Capacity

In the days after the pandemic hit, it quickly became clear that Canada was facing a goods and services shortage. 

Access to everything from personal protective equipment and essential consumer goods like soaps and hand sanitizers became a concern along with food shortages. As the lock downs continued and government response programs were implemented, another critical shortage became clear – client services and customer support. Many spent hours or even days trying to access help lines to get answers about Employment Insurance, CERB claims and other financial supports. 

This crisis has shown us that maintaining and promoting domestic industrial capacity is as much a public good as anything else. Government must:

  • rebuild domestic industrial capacity by conducting a critical review of international trade and investment obligations; 
  • create comprehensive industrial strategies including in critical sectors such as auto, aerospace, shipbuilding and forestry, along with client services and customer support industries, to start; 
  • implement measures to protect the supply chains for critical goods and services, especially the food supply chain; 
  • replant the seeds of industrial capacity in targeted growth sectors such as health care and biomedicine;
  • reactivate vacant capacity; 
  • and expand the Industrial Technological Benefits program to commit to Canadian content in all public procurement projects.

Government officials have the opportunity and the moral obligation to create a more equitable, fair, resilient and sustainable economy.

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