Keep an eye on this

Keep an eye on this.

Lest you mistake my intent, I have never said we need to exclusively focus on attracting foreign investment. I think that is a key component but my real focus in on attracting our share of investment capital – into our SMEs and also by attracting firms themselves from outside the province.

So far, I have been more than a little impressed by the New Brunswick Securities Commission. I don’t know who’s running it or what their motivations are but this group just might end up being an important catalyst for opening up New Brunswick for investment capital.

Remember what a securities commission does:

The New Brunswick Securities Commission (NBSC) is the Crown corporation established by the Province of New Brunswick in 2004 to regulate the securities industry and ensure the efficiency and integrity of capital markets in New Brunswick .

In most situtations, a securities commission is about regulation, efficiency and integrity – just like th vision of the NBSC.

But somebody over there, wisely, figured out that there ain’t any friggin’ capital market here to speak of and maybe the NBSC itself could do something about that.

Maybe if we had this type of thinking more broadly in government, we just might move ahead in this province.

For example, somebody told me once that the DM of the Department of Health said “we are not in the business of economic development, we are in the business of health” in the context of health research.

Well, the department spends $2 billion a year. It’s in the business of economic development by default.

Whether or not that $2 billion is spent with an eye to economic benefit depends entirely on that DM and his/her boss and his/her boss.

And if I need to spell this out, maybe you need to go get an economics 101 textbook.

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0 Responses to Keep an eye on this

  1. Anonymous says:

    Healthcare spending goes to regulatee bodies such as doctors, nurses, administrators salaries, equipment, hospitals and drug payments. Where is the economic development in there?

    As for the other, thats a BAD idea to have a regulatory commission in charge of trying to do economic development, and if THAT needs to spelled out perhaps people should check out an ethics textbook 101.

  2. David Campbell says:

    Gosh, you are a piece of work, anon. $2 billion spent each year in communities all over NB. Tens of thousands of direct and indirect jobs and you don’t see this as economic development? You restrict your definition too tightly. The $700 million more spent today than in 1999 surely means more economic development somewhere. As for hammering the NBSC you are also going down a bizarre road. You constantly preach about the small business and when an agency comes along to support the SME sector, you crap on them. The NBSC did not say it would relax its regulation to accomodate growth in the capital markets.

  3. Anonymous says:

    If you’re defining economic development that loosely then by all means I’m on board. In fact, as I’ve said, nationalizing the forestry industry would make it far more labour intensive. If that is the case, then government intervention should be even more pronounced since EVERYTHING it does is ‘economic development’.

    But have a body both regulate AND encourage economic development is a bad idea. Of COURSE they will say “sure, you can trust us, we’ll be impartial”. The reality is that regulatory bodies are for exactly that, and economic development department’s are for that. If it became part of their mandate, what’s to stop them from doing as the government does with the environment, which is just to invite them in and say they will ignore all their typical requirements.

    Of course if a market like BC’s mining, or Alberta’s oil exchange, which are known worldwide for rampant corruption, then by all means proceed. In fact, the more crooked you operate, the more likely it is you attract those certain types of business.