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Recent Immigrants More Likely to Export, Target Markets Outside the U.S.

Canada’s trade agenda is focused on opening up markets beyond the United States, and a new study shows that one group is doing just that. The Conference Board of Canada report looks at the experience of Canada’s immigrant exporters and finds that businesses owned by recent immigrants are more likely to export and more likely to target markets other than United States. Twelve per cent of immigrant-owned businesses export goods and services to markets beyond the U.S., versus seven per cent for businesses owned by non-immigrants.


“How Canada Performs” Education Report Card

The Conference Board of Canada has handed out its report cards on the education and skills performance of Canada and its provinces. Canada as a whole gets a “B” grade and ranks near the top of the international class. But there are significant differences among the provinces. British Columbia, Ontario, and Alberta are the top-performing provinces, earning strong “B” grades. Quebec and Nova Scotia earn “C” grades. And the five other provinces are at the back of the class, with “D” or “D–” grades. (Limited data do not allow for similar comparisons with Canada's territories.)

Change Is in the Air Among Provincial Economies

Western Canadian provinces will boast the fastest-growing provincial economies this year and again in 2015. Alberta will take its usual place at the top of the list. However, this year Manitoba and B.C. will move past Saskatchewan—a growth leader among the provinces in recent years. Growth in Saskatchewan will actually slow sharply, while the near-term outlook is looking increasingly positive for Manitoba and British Columbia.

The Value of Garbage

Waste diversion, through practices such as recycling, composting, and reusing waste material, is an increasingly important aspect of solid waste management. Yet, less than a quarter of the garbage produced in Ontario is currently diverted from disposal sites. More recycling, composting, and re-using of waste could support thousands of jobs in Ontario and add about $1.5 billion to the provincial economy.

A Snapshot of Leadership Development Practices in Canada

At a time when many of the current senior leaders in Canada are approaching retirement, the need for new leadership has never been more important. However, our snapshot of leadership development practices across Canada suggests that, when faced with economic challenges, some organizations eliminate or reduce related leadership development activities.

We Can All Play a Role in Preventing Terrorism

Recent incidents, such as the involvement of Canadians in overseas terrorism and the arrests of Canadians planning terrorist activities in Ontario and British Columbia, indicate that terrorism continues to pose a real threat to Canada. Although we have been successful so far at countering it, we must continue to build our resilience to terrorism. One key theme that has emerged from the Conference Board’s national security and public safety work in this area is the need for strong public–private partnerships. More cooperation between the public and private sectors would result in a greater range of tools, resources, and approaches in the fight against terrorism.

Celebrating 60 Years of the CBoC in Canada

In 1955, Arthur J.R. Smith, a young economist employed by the Federal Reserve Bank in New York, moved to Montréal to work alongside the director of the National Industrial Conference Board's Canadian office, Monteath Douglas. When Douglas retired in 1971, Smith was named the first president of The Conference Board in Canada. By then, the Canadian organization had expanded to 13 employees with a budget of $300,000 a year.

CBoC Highlights

Our chief economist, Glen Hodgson, talks about World Cup 2014 and the economics of pro sports in Canada on BNN.

Margaret Trudeau delivered the keynote presentation at the Conference Board’s Workplace Wellness and Mental Health 2014 conference. Following her presentation, Trudeau hosted a signing for her book Changing My Mind.


On CBC’s “The Lang and O’Leary Exchange,” Danielle Goldfarb, Associate Director of the Conference Board’s Global Commerce Centre, highlights the strengths of small and medium-sized businesses run by recent immigrants to Canada.


In This Issue

  • Recent Immigrants More Likely to Export, Target Markets Outside the U.S.
  • “How Canada Performs” Education Report Card
  • Change Is in the Air Among Provincial Economies
  • The Value of Garbage
  • A Snapshot of Leadership Development Practices in Canada
  • We Can All Play a Role in Preventing Terrorism
  • Celebrating 60 Years of the CBoC in Canada

Previous Issues


MyService—The Toronto Police Service’s Journey on Transforming its Culture
Sep 16 at 2:00 PM

Latest Blogs

Four Employee Trends Disrupting Traditional Benefits Plans

May 01, 2019

As workplaces become more generationally diverse, the needs of employees have become more complex. More than ever, HR professionals are looking for ways to respond to these varied needs.

Employers have their work cut out for them when it comes to remaining cost-effective while providing today’s workforce with the most valuable health benefits.

Based on the 2019 Benefits Benchmarking report, here are the top four employee trends disrupting traditional benefits plans:

Cannabis in the Workplace

Medical cannabis has been legal in Canada since 2001, and the number of authorized users has grown dramatically. By mid-2018, 342,000 Canadians were registered to use legally.

Due to the recent legalization of recreational cannabis, medical cannabis is expected to be more common. Employees are increasingly turning to their employers with questions about coverage. Yet, only a handful of the Canadian organizations we surveyed offer coverage for medical cannabis.

Employers should consider creating strategies that are mindful of this new frontier.

Aging Workforce

The needs of Canadian employees have become increasingly complex as Canada’s largest generation continues to work past the typical retirement age. This has put pressure on the health care system. Employers find themselves challenged to address the needs of this generation head-on.

Organizations are aware of this trend, and they are looking for technology to better manage health care needs.

Increase Use of Biologic Drugs

There has been an increase in the use of biologic drugs and a greater focus on paramedical services. This has made it difficult for organizations to decide where to invest resources.

Given this growing trend, having a drug cost management strategy is becoming increasingly important for the long-term sustainability of benefits plans.

Virtual Health Care and Wellness

Organizations are seeking more cost-effective, creative, and proactive ways to maintain and improve employee health. Canadian organizations are increasingly turning to new technologies that focus on prevention, such as virtual wellness technologies to manage health and fitness and pharmacogenetic testing.

Different industries align their benefits strategies with virtual wellness technologies in varying ways. Their focuses may include physical wellness, improving financial wellness, reducing stress, absenteeism, or productivity.

Get ahead of these disruptors by leveraging data from 217 Canadian organizations in the 2019 Benefits Benchmarking report. Read on.

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