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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: December 8, 2022

Ontario to hold consultations on Budget 2023, Ontario pharmacists to prescribe Paxlovid from December 12, and more.

In this edition:

Ontario to hold consultations on Budget 2023

The Government of Ontario is seeking ideas from workers, families, business owners and communities on what they need and what they want to see in the next phase of the government’s plan as part of Ontario’s 2023 Budget.

“As we visit communities across the province, we want to hear from the people and businesses of Ontario on how our government can continue to build the province,” said Minister Bethlenfalvy. “Together we have made great progress on our plan to build and by continuing together we can create a prosperous Ontario for today and tomorrow.”

Minister Bethlenfalvy, President of the Treasury Board Prabmeet Sarkaria, and Parliamentary Assistants Stephen Crawford and Rick Byers will hold in-person consultations across the province from January 11 to February 10, beginning in Brampton.

People and organizations are also welcome to submit their ideas by email or mail to the Ministry of Finance. In January, the government will also launch an online survey.

Visit for more information about how to participate.

Click here to read more.

Ontario pharmacists to prescribe Paxlovid from December 12

The Ontario government is giving people more convenient access to care by allowing pharmacists to prescribe Paxlovid, an antiviral treatment option used to reduce severe outcomes from COVID-19. All Ontarians are strongly encouraged to keep up to date with vaccinations, which remains the best way for people to stay healthy this flu and respiratory illness season and prevent unnecessary visits to the hospital.

Starting December 12, 2022, pharmacists will be able to prescribe Paxlovid to eligible individuals in-person or virtually (such as by telephone) at no cost. Eligible individuals should contact their local pharmacy to confirm if they prescribe Paxlovid and how to get a prescription for Paxlovid.

Click here to read more.

U.S. business executives’ confidence in the Canadian economy weakens: study

The American Chamber of Commerce in Canada (AMCHAM Canada) announced the results of the ‘AmCham-Nanos American Investment in Canada Index (ANAIC Index),’ conducted by Nanos and presented by PNC Bank. The semi-annual study suggests that U.S. business executives’ sentiment on the Canadian economy is at an all-time low.

The report notes red tape or regulatory uncertainty (65%), followed by monetary policy, costs, rising interest rates and inflation (50%) and labour shortages (35%) are their top concerns for conducting business in Canada. However, sentiment regarding Canada’s business investment environment continues to track upwards – in fact, it’s up 11 points since April 2021.

“In addition to growing concerns around regulatory uncertainty, monetary policy and labour, nearly 50% of participating U.S. business executives predict the Canadian economy is moving in the wrong direction,” said David Olsen, regional president for PNC Bank in Canada and chair of AmCham Canada. “In the current environment, it has never been more critical to provide companies that operate within the U.S. and Canada with the insights and advice they need to make smart business and financial decisions.”

Click here to read more.

CRTC rejects Telus’ request to charge credit card processing fee for home phones

Today, the CRTC refused Telus’s request to introduce a processing fee in Alberta and British Columbia on payments made by credit card. The request only applied to services that are regulated by the CRTC, which are generally home telephone services in certain smaller communities.

On October 17, 2022, Telus began to charge a 1.5% fee to clients paying by credit card in areas where services are not regulated by the CRTC, which includes its wireless and Internet customers outside of Quebec.

While Telus didn’t need the CRTC’s approval to add the surcharge to its unregulated services, the CRTC is very concerned about this practice as it goes against affordability and consumer interest. In addition, this practice impacts the most vulnerable consumers who rely on credit cards to pay their everyday bills, especially when prices for essential goods and services are rising due to inflation.

Click here for more information and to register.

Government of Canada introduces bill to enshrine early learning and child care into law

Today, the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould, introduced an Act to respecting early learning and child care in Canada in parliament.  If passed, the bill would enshrine the principles of a Canada-wide early learning and child care system into federal law. This bill marks an historic milestone in the Government’s commitment to ensuring families in Canada have enduring access to affordable, inclusive and high-quality early learning and child care. This includes a commitment to maintain long-term federal funding for provinces, territories and Indigenous peoples to support the provision of early learning and child care under a Canada-wide system.

Bill C-35 builds upon the vision and principles of the federal/provincial/territorial Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework, as well as the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework that was co‑developed and endorsed by Indigenous leadership and the Government of Canada. If passed, the bill would respect provincial and territorial jurisdiction and Indigenous rights, including the right to self‑determination.

Click here to read more.

Focus on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Study: women still underrepresented in leadership positions

Despite decades of gains in the workplace, women continue to be underrepresented in leadership and decision-making positions, a new Statistics Canada study released today has found.

The study, titled “Immigrant women among board directors and officers: From admission in Canada to executive roles,” provides the first socioeconomic profile of immigrant women at admission who have reached management positions in their careers once employed in Canada. From an intersectional lens, exploratory estimates on disparities by gender and immigrant status for family, work and income characteristics are presented. The types of businesses where immigrant women executives contribute to corporate governance and strategic decision making were also examined.

Click here to read more.

Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.

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