Are Canadian firms afraid of BRICS, MINT?

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Forbes has spoken about itThe Agenda has spoken about.   M.I.N.T is the next hot thing in global business.  Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey are considered to be nations full of great opportunity while having particular risk factors.

The question we have to ask ourselves in Canada is, are we afraid of emerging, non traditional markets?   One of the guest on The Agenda seems to imply that Canadian businesses should only invest in nations where Canada has agreements with.  There is some validity in this opinion.   Every organization has to protect its interest and try its best to reduce risk.

However, we do need more Canadian firms to take on emerging markets, even in places that we wouldn’t consider.   Canada has an array of expertise in natural resources, construction, logistics/shipping, agriculture, finance/banking, information technology and mining that could be used to expand revenue growth.

In turn, the knowledge transfer that Canadian firms can bring to an array of markets could great help bridge the digital divide and assist with many Social Responsibility issues.

It is time for many Canadian firms to look at M.I.N.T, BRICS and others as growth markets.  Of course, we will need our investors and banks to also open up to the reality that the best opportunities out there, may not be in your traditional comfort zone!

 

 

Blog by Radcliffe Dockery

Nay-cation? Why Canadians are leaving vacation days on the table

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The lack of work life Balance is troubling!!!

Financial Post | Business

It doesn’t seem to add up. Canadians put a lot of value on vacation but don’t even use the days they are entitled to.

A new survey by TD Bank finds 93% of Canadians think vacations are important to be “happy” but only 43% report using up all of the days they are entitled to.

It gets worse. All those vacation days not used amount to billions of dollars going back to employers because once they’re gone, they might just be gone forever.

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Hellen Buttigieg, a life coach and founder of We Organize U, said she’s not surprised to see all vacation time left on the table.

“There is often a disconnect to what we value and how we behave,” said Ms. Buttigieg. “Vacation is an investment in our health, our relationships and in the long-run productivity.”

Shawnette Fraser, a branch manager at TD Canada Trust, says the…

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Jack Warner, Former FIFA VP, Was Paid $1.2 Million By Qatari Firm in 2011

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Something is VERY VERY WRONG here #corruption

The Big Lead

FBL-FIFA-CORRUPTION-CONCACAF-WARNER-FILES

Former FIFA vice president Jack Warner is making headlines again. The Daily Telegraph reports he, his sons and an employee were paid more than $2 million by a Qatari firm related to the 2022 World Cup bid in 2011. Of that figure, $1.2 million went to Warner personally through shell companies.

Given Warner’s track record, the only surprising thing would be if that was the whole of it. Below are his corroborated and reported wrongdoings.

* Warner resigned as FIFA vice president in 2011, after being accused of bribing Caribbean delegates with $40,000 cash to vote for Mohammed Bin Hammam, the Qatari head of the Asian Football Confederation, who was running against Sepp Blatter for FIFA president. In exchange for his resignation, FIFA’s dropped its investigation.

* Warner was paid more than $6 million to build a Trinidad and Tobago Center of Excellence to deliver votes to Sepp Blatter running…

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The Left and the Right need to get out of their ideological comfort zones

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Taken from the Toronto Star...

CCPAOntario has an economic problem, which is leading to great social problems due to financial stress.  And no amount of rhetoric from the left or the right will change this.  What is required is for all stakeholders in our economy from educators, unions, investors, entrepreneurs and politicians to get together and develop practical solutions.

First step, as a service driven economy our education system needs to staffed with educators who have real world experience.   This has to start in high school.  Teachers should be in more intense training or job placements for the subjects they teach whether it be arts, sciences, business and technology.  Our students use smartphones and the interest, they can see through BS quickly – thus our educators must be on prepared with real work knowledge.

Second, the private sector must start telling the truth about the skills shortage.  I know first hand what it is like when you are unemployed and have the skills/experience for 90% of the jobs in your field.  However, it seems as if many companies are posting jobs just to fill their databases with resumes.      Even worse, we often see that a company will post a job, reject all candidates then within 2 months re post the same job again – and continue the cycle over and over again.  We need to stop the hype about skills shortages and ensure that the the shortage is REAL.   Sadly, too many Canadians are spending money on training courses only to remain unemployed. Good for training schools, bad for families.

Third, Ontario has to embrace trade more aggressively.   Recently on The Agenda, there had a a great discussion about foreign markets.   BRICS (Brazil, Russia, Indian, China, South Africa) and MINT (Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria, Turkey).    Lawyer Mark Warner made the key point on the show when he stated “When entering an emerging market, businesses have to be prepared for the unexpected… it won’t be smooth, but the opportunities are there”.   Companies, investors and academic thought leaders have to embrace emerging markets more aggressively.   Export Development Bank of Canada can provide lots of support for companies entering these markets.

Fourth, Ontario has to start investing in the RIGHT sectors.   Yes, the Auto Sector is important to the economy.   However, the attitude of Ford Canada and UNIFOR towards the South Korean Free Trade Agreement is a concern.   While Ford USA embraced the deal, Ford Canada did not.   UNIFOR compared imports/exports of cars between Canada and South Korea as proof of this being a bad deal for Canada.   The focus instead should be about how Ontario plants can 1) Attract more investment from VW, BMW, Audi etc into Canada  2)  making cars that foreign markets would want.

While Ontario continues to invest money in the Auto Sector, even when they don’t want it.    – The information technology, entertainment, logistics and infrastructure sectors do not get enough attention.   Ontario needs to focus more funds on industries that will lead to great exports for our companies.

In Ontario, we are no longer a manufacturing hot bed.  Tim Hudak has a plan however it sounds more rhetorical than practical.  Premier Wynne, speaks in platitudes and Andrea Horvarth doesn’t give us much detail.

The left and the right need to stop sitting in their ideological comfort zones and start focusing on practical solutions to our economic problems.   While both sides continue their rhetoric, way too many Ontario families continue to struggle.   Stop the noise and start getting to work!

blog post by Radcliffe Dockery

 

10 Things You Need to Know About the Massive GM Recall

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oh boy. Not a good look GM #GM #AUTO

TIME

General Motors’ massive recall is the latest in the auto-making giant’s string of headaches. The company is now offering a $500 discount on new or leased cars for the owners of the 1.6 million vehicles the company recalled last month. The announcement comes as federal investigators begin looking into the ignition-related recall linked to 12 deaths. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. The defective ignition switches were installed on Chevrolet Cobalt, Pontiac G5, Saturn Ion, Pontiac Solstice, Chevrolet HHR and Saturn Sky models built between 2003 and 2007. If a driver puts several extra keys or heavy items on a key chain, or jars it inadvertently, the ignition key could slip out of “run” to “accessory” or “off,” shutting off the engine and safety equipment such as the airbag.
  2. The ignition defect covering approximately 1.6 million General Motors Co. cars is relatively inexpensive and easy to…

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