Exports should be an election issue

There are two reasons why exports should be an election issue:

1) Because when you exclude the Irving refinery, total exports are down by $800 million from 2000 to 2005. This translates into thousands of lost – mostly rural and small town – jobs. Paper Mills exports are down 47%, Sawmills and Wood Preservation down 26%, aquaculture down 13%, paperboard mills down 34%, etc. There have been a few winners, Veneer, Plywood and Engineered Wood Product Manufacturing is up 73% higher in 2005 than 2000. Overall, however; the trend is decidedly downward and the government has incessantly bragged about the record export levels (who can forget the billion with a ‘b’ comment).

2) The second reason why is the mysteriously vanishing Prosperty Plan goal:

NB will increase its percentage of exporting firms from 45% to 55%,
and the proportion of its non-resource-based exports from 29% to 40%
of total exports by 2012.

Now, by my rough calculation, the proportion of non-resource-based exports has decreased since 2000.

In my opinion, New Brunswick is an exporting province but not a province of exporters. When you back out resource-based exports, there’s almost none left.

By the way, in case you were wondering, across Canada, despite the border problems, exports are up by $16 billion from 2000 to 2005.

Election implications?

We need a government that will be honest with the people about our export situation. Billion with a ‘b’ should be stricken from the public record.

We need a government that doesn’t make silly promises when there is no hope in heck of achieving them (most of the PP targets).

If a government says increasing SME exports is a priority, then it should lean into that objective and put serious resources behind it. We need a government that does what it says it will do.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

0 Responses to Exports should be an election issue

  1. Anonymous says:

    New Brunswick has always been a ‘sell off cheap’ province. When you have very few operators they can get very rich, at least for awhile. This should be an election issue and if anybody gets any printed copies of newspapers I’d appreciate them holding onto them, I’d like to do a study when the election is over of the type of issues that get press coverage.

    The NDP is the only party that will probably even mention the massive 50% cut in crown fees. That has huge implications for the ability of our government to pay for services. Not to mention the fact that you always hear peopl drone on about how ‘children are our future’. I don’t think I can think of a country which seems to despise its children as much as ours does. That literally means there will be no forest resource for the next generation to do anything with, not to mention the environmental impacts of less water each spring (clearcuts are known to dry up riverbeds and groundwater).

    All for the sake of five companies who hardly even employ anybody. Remember, Vermont exports are still about half of NB’s, and they have FULL employment. Being export oriented isn’t everything, as Irving and McCain have proven.

    However, it certainly is a good indicator of just how poorly the province is doing, when the only thing you’ve been noted for you aren’t doing anymore.