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Monday
Jul212014

Education Expansion at the Surrey Board of Trade - SBOT Partners with Small Business BC to Offer Webinars

The Surrey Board of Trade has created a new partnership with Small Business BC to provide businesses with the opportunity to take part in a number of webinars, in addition to the extensive in-person workshops the Surrey Board of Trade already provides. This will help businesses and their team members access educational workshops from their office, instead of being at the Surrey Board of Trade office in person.
"Through the convenience of technology, this is an efficient way for people to upgrade their skills in over 40 subject areas, from marketing to accounting to sales and more. Many of the instructors are small business owners themselves, and have real-life experiences to draw from. Whether you need help branding your business, hiring employees, managing operations or anything else, together, the Surrey Board of Trade and Small Business BC have an educational workshop to support your business and your team members," said Anita Huberman, CEO Surrey Board of Trade.

To take advantage of this service, view the Surrey Board of Trade's webinar calendar: (scroll to the bottom of the page): http://www.businessinsurrey.com/business-workshops

And don't forget to check out the great in-person workshops that the Surrey Board of Trade provides in their conference room!

For more information, contact:

Anita Huberman
CEO, Surrey Board of Trade

101-14439 104 Avenue
Surrey, BC V3R 1M1
604-581-7130

Wednesday
Jul162014

Canada’s International Trade Minister Ed Fast to speak in Surrey on Canada's Global Brand and Free Trade Agreements

On Thursday, August 7th, the Surrey Board of Trade will host Canada’s International Trade Minister, the Hon. Ed Fast. The Government of Canada has many tools available to support Canadian companies, especially small and medium-sized enterprises to explore and do business effectively in new markets. Find out what Canada’s International Trade Minister is doing to renew the focus on trade promotion and economic diplomacy in the recently released Global Markets Action Plan.

The Minister Ed Fast will speak to the following:

1. How to work with the Private Sector to achieve Canada’s Success in International Markets

2. How to Unify and Build Canada’s Business Brand in the Global Marketplace

3. Status on the Free Trade Agreement with Canada’s major trading partners including Korea, India, Japan and the EU.

Date:  Thursday, August 7, 2014
Location:  Sheraton Vancouver Guildford Hotel (15269 104 Avenue, Surrey)
Time:  Lunch and Registration 11:30 am; Program 12:00 – 1:30 pm
Admission: $45 + GST each (member) or $60+ GST each (non-member)

Sponsored By: BNSF Railway & McQuarrie Hunter LLP

Media Sponsor: CKNW & The Now Newspaper

For further information, please contact Anita Huberman, CEO, Surrey Board of Trade, at anita@businessinsurrey.com or at 604.634.0342.

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Tuesday
Jul152014

NEW BOARD OF TRADE/CHAMBER REPORT IDENTIFIES $50 BILLION RISK TO LOWER FRASER RIVER  

“Immediate Government Action Required to Head off Economic, Environmental and Social Catastrophe” 

Surrey, July 15, 2014 - Today, Boards of Trade and Chambers of Commerce from the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley released a new research study which concludes that $50 billion in economic development along the Lower Fraser River is at risk unless all levels of government act now to address the serious issues facing the river.

Without an integrated management strategy and adequate funding, “the Lower Fraser River is heading for potential economic, environmental and social disaster unless senior levels of government start dealing with issues now,” said the report’s principal author, Dave Park. “With over 300,000 people in the flood plain – and another one million expected to live in the region by 2040 – the risks are too great to ignore.”

The report was commissioned by the Richmond Chamber of Commerce in early 2013 with the Surrey Board of Trade, in partnership with 12 others Chambers and Boards, and the provincial government. The report was led by Dave Park, an independent economist and former Chief Economist for the Vancouver Board of Trade. Among the risks it identifies are:

  • inadequate flood protection infrastructure, which right now might not contain high tides in El Nino years; 
  • lack of action on annual sediment removal from spring freshets, which each year move over 30 million m3 of sediment and leave about 3 million m3 of silt in the navigation and secondary channels of the lower reaches; and, 
  • by the end of this century sea levels at the mouth of the river could potentially rise more than one meter due to climate change overtopping the diking system.

Based on these and other serious risks to the economic benefits of the Fraser River, every Board of Trade and Chamber of Commerce in the Lower Mainland – from the mouth of the river around Richmond, to the entrance to the Fraser canyon at Hope, are calling on senior levels of government to act now to commit funding to head off potential disaster.

“The current costs just for diking upgrades for the tidal areas of the river and for adjacent coastal reaches required by 2100 are in range of $9 billion,” added Matt Pitcairn, the Manager of Policy and Communications at the Richmond Chamber of Commerce and the report’s co-author. “Damage from a major dike failure could be in the tens of billions of dollars, with very serious effects to the economy of this region, British Columbia and all of Canada due to the impact on the transportation of goods and services,” said Pitcairn.

“The first step is to bring together the relevant stakeholders into a group,” concluded Park. “They should then be empowered to develop a collaborative strategy that will include the long term funding needed to deal with the significant risks to the Lower Fraser River, the region, and entire the national economy.”

The Lower Fraser River is a vitally important resource for the Lower Mainland, British Columbia, and Canada as a whole, with port activity that rivals Canadian traffic on the St. Lawrence Seaway. In addition to port activity, the river supports a myriad of other economic activities vital to the region and beyond, such as:

  • 9 of 10 Federal Small Craft Harbours  in the region are located on the Fraser River including Steveston which hosts the largest SCH in Canada
  • Fraser River and its tributaries offer all 5 species of Pacific Salmon on seven of the most productive rivers in the province

The Boards of Trade and Chambers of Commerce chose today to release the report in conjunction with the launch of the Lower Mainland Flood Strategy by the Fraser Basin Council.

“The impacts from potential floods are a major risk identified in our study,” said Pitcairn, “and we support the collaborative approach initiated by the Fraser Basin Council today, to implement an inter-jurisdictional regional flood management strategy.”

The next step in the process of bringing greater awareness and attention to the major risks facing the sustainability and prosperity of the Lower Fraser River will be a forum hosted on October 16th at the Sheraton Vancouver Guildford Hotel in Surrey by the Lower Mainland Chambers and Boards of Trade. This one day event will explore in greater detail the findings of the research report and how to best act on them. Senior elected officials and staff from all levels of governments will be invited, as will be First Nations and representatives of major stakeholder organizations.

An electronic version of the full report can be accessed here.

Wednesday
Jul092014

Surrey Board of Trade has Funding Concerns with Today's Released Fraser Health Strategic Plan

The Surrey Board of Trade is pleased to see the release of the report from the Minister of Health, on the Fraser Health Authority and its impact on Surrey. We realize that the rapid growth of the region is certainly problematic. The Surrey Board of Trade is very pleased with the recent upgrades of new and existing facilities. However, we are concerned with the serious funding imbalance in comparison our neighbour, Vancouver Coastal Health.

We are referring to the per patient funding inequity.  In the Vancouver Coastal Health the per patient allocation is $3,000, whereas in the Fraser Health Authority, after consideration of the central services provided by Vancouver Coastal Health, the allocation is $1,500 per patient. This is a serious imbalance and needs to be resolved given the continued and anticipated population growth in the region.

“If this is addressed in the report released today, it is not readily apparent,” said Anita Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade. “We will be asking Minister Terry Lake to meet with us to discuss this issue. We would like to offer our assistance in any effort to improve the provision of health services in Surrey.

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For more information, please contact Anita Huberman, CEO, Surrey Board of Trade at 604-340-3899.