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Second report by the Robillard Commission: an exacting exercise and a call to action

Montréal, August 31, 2015 ‒ The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal welcomes the second report from the Commission de révision permanente des programmes (permanent commission on program review).

“The report released today is thorough and structured,” said Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal. “It is based on a realistic analysis of the socioeconomic challenges facing Quebec and Montréal and draws inspiration from best practices. The business community had long been calling for this sort of exercise to make government more effective and improve the province’s and the city’s business environment.”

A permanent program review mechanism is essential

“We particularly support the implementation of a permanent program review mechanism. Public programs must better respond to the public’s needs and reflect our ability to pay.”

“The implementation of the Commission’s recommendations will force the Government of Quebec to clarify its role,” Michel Leblanc said. “The government should primarily regulate, oversee and support society and economic activity rather than be an agent in the economy.”

Liberalizing the SAQ’s activities will create a more competitive business environment

“We support the Commission’s recommendations to end the SAQ’s monopoly,” Mr. Leblanc said. “The competition will benefit both the public and innovative companies that want to break into the market. The issue of liberalizing the SAQ’s activities is one that has long been avoided. It’s time now to act.”

Duplicated effort in fiscal administration generating significant costs

“We share the Commission’s findings about the duplication of effort between the federal and provincial governments,” Michel Leblanc said. “We support its recommendation to analyze the impact of a possible transfer of tax collection activities to the federal government, particularly for corporate taxes. However, the Board of Trade reiterates the importance of the Government of Quebec maintaining its fiscal autonomy. The definition and implementation of Quebec’s fiscal policy must remain the provincial government’s responsibility.”

Support for economic development must be better aligned and more efficient

“The Commission’s proposals to simplify assistance measures for businesses echo our recommendations,” Michel Leblanc said. “A good housecleaning is required in the many assistance programs and hundreds of organizations that administer them. We recommend that the government concentrate financial assistance on organizations that have proven their worth, achieve performance objectives and follow an evaluation and reporting process.”

The government needs to take action

“We applaud Minister Martin Coiteux’s commitment to implement the Commission’s recommendations and move immediately to create a Permanent Program Review Bureau,” Michel Leblanc concluded. “The business community calls on the government to follow suit with the other recommendations and will keep a close eye to see what comes out of the report.”

About the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal

The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal is made up of over 7,000 members. Its mission is to be the voice of Montréal’s business community and to promote the city’s prosperity. It is involved in key areas of economic development, advocating a philosophy of action based on engagement, credibility, proactivity, collaboration, and innovation. The Board of Trade also offers a range of specialized services to individuals and to businesses of all sizes to support them in their growth at home and abroad.


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Michelle LLambias Meunier
Advisor, Media Relations
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal

Phone: 514 871-4000, extension 4042

Twitter: @chambremontreal

Follow the discussion: #ccmmqcca

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