Consider these side-by-side…..Canada’s loss of mid-sized companies (527 gone between 2007 and 2010); the phenomenon of “reshoring” in which major manufacturers are bringing their business back from the likes of Japan to Georgia and Kansas; and the debate regarding financial support to Ford to re-tool its Oakville plant for new vehicle production in 2014 (and add in the angst over the impending line shutdown at GM Oshawa and loss of jobs).
The BDC can study this to death as per their views in Saturday’s Globe & Mail. By the time they announce a conclusion and any government level responds, the possible gains from the” reshoring” decade will be safely found in Indiana, Tennessee and Georgia.
Canadians have to be prepared to work for lower wages in the private sector, unionized or not, and government instead of just reducing headcount in the public sector, has to reduce real compensation so that we don’t end up with a two tier society (we already have it in pensions between the two sectors). We still have an educated workforce, space and structure to support these “reshoring” projects. It’s a sense of the real world that exists in a global market for manufacturing that’s needed. There’s a need to have a short, open debate about the aforementioned hollowing out of our business sector and the consequent reduced economic capability to supply a standard of living the starting point. Candid business, union (public sector and private) and political leadership will be absolutely necessary if a new consensus is to be constructed. All the protesting in the world (see Greece and Spain) doesn’t change problems of high unemployment. The state governments in the USA have taken a view that jobs are necessary and they and their citizens are embracing the manufacturing jobs that are re-appearing. Let the market set the wages. Forget the posturing. It’s what has to be done now to recreate the more prosperous future we want for our children and their children.