As we begin 2022 I wish you and your workforce success for the coming year.
As the Surrey Board of Trade President & CEO, now in my 16th year, I wanted to take this time to thank you for your ongoing support and communication with the Surrey Board of Trade: Surrey’s non-partisan, city-building business organization. We are one of the top 10 largest chambers of commerce/boards of trade, out of 450 Canada-wide.
I know how frustrating it is that we are now in the third calendar year of the pandemic. We continue to face many economic and social challenges that erode the bottom line for businesses and organizations. Today, we heard that we are facing the highest inflation rates since 1991 of almost 5%. Next week, I will be attending the Bank of Canada Monetary Policy briefing to ascertain how they will respond to rising costs for businesses. It is anticipated that the Bank Rate will increase for the first time since October 2018. BDC’s Chief Economist will join us on February 3 at 10am to give a digital briefing to the Surrey Board of Trade members.
Each business experiences the impacts of inflation differently. Largely their experience depends on the nature of their market, the types of products and services they offer, and their brand strength.
On one hand, when inflation rises, the purchasing power of consumers erode – in simple terms, they can now buy fewer goods and services than they used to. This means businesses will record lower sales, reducing the total revenue of the business. Companies are more likely to grow their business when they know what their costs will be in the years ahead. This helps the economy expand at a sustainable pace, generating higher incomes and new jobs. Taxes, labour challenges, supply chain issues, global situations are affecting all of us. Tax reform through the provincial and federal governments is one of the ingredients needed to help alleviate bottom line pressure on businesses.
A smooth economic recovery will require continued collaboration between public and private sectors as we continue the COVID-19 pandemic journey in 2022. We must all put our egos aside and focus on advancing opportunities for businesses and organizations. We anticipate many economic successes this year, but there will be challenges – especially for those hardest hit industries throughout the pandemic. Surrey’s economy is doing well overall, but we must never lose sight of those that are not doing well – everyone matters, and everyone deserves a voice.
Our marketplace is constantly changing, paradigms are shifting, and local/global economic and political conditions are dynamic, with new demands creating new expectations for proactive and responsive leadership by the Surrey Board of Trade and for you as businesses and organizations. We have been, and will continue to be, proactive leaders for Surrey’s economy.
A call to action…for Surrey
The Surrey Board of Trade can accomplish many things, but at the heart of a successful organization is the active participation of its members. We are only as strong as our members. I call upon you to be active by joining our Teams, by renewing your membership, by encouraging other businesses to join, by attending our many interesting events, by actively engaging with us on social media, by providing feedback on the many issues that I email you about, but most of all, by being an ambassador for Surrey business. Together, our potential is boundless to make Surrey an Opportunity City!
Let’s continue to power up entrepreneurial success in Surrey. Let’s continue to risk, care, dream, expect and expand our networks – locally, nationally and internationally.
Check out businessinsurrey.com to stay up to date on our results in the areas of economic development, government advocacy, workforce development, business and international services, and city and business building events.
The Surrey Board of Trade is here for you.
P.S. I ask you to please send this message to your staff and colleagues because Surrey matters to them as well.
-Anita Huberman, President & CEO, Surrey Board of Trade