B.C. can never compete in “digging dirt out of the ground” with countries that don’t protect workers or their environment, so it has to use innovation to be globally competitive, says B.C. Green Party leader Andrew Weaver.
Weaver joined B.C. Jobs Minister Bruce Ralston at a Vancouver high-tech company Tuesday to praise the establishment of a 14-member “emerging economy task force,” headed by BCIT president Kathy Kinloch.
The task force was part of the B.C. Green Party’s platform in the 2017 election, and became a commitment in the minority government agreement with the B.C. NDP.
Weaver and Ralston said Minesense, a company specializing in sensor-based ore sorting to make mines more efficient and productive, symbolized the technological leaps need for B.C.’s industry.
“That means we not only export the dirt, we also export the knowledge, the technology and the value-added products associated with resource extraction,” Weaver said.
The task force includes B.C. Innovation Commissioner, a more permanent addition to the province’s push to aid new technology businesses. The federal government also has multiple innovation programs, including the recently announced “supercluster” group to focus on high technology investment in B.C.
Also named to the B.C. task force are: Jock Finlayson, executive vice president of the Business Council of B.C.; Ragwa Gopal, CEO of Accelerate Okanagan, Iglika Ivanova, senior economist with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and Corrine Stavness, an executive with Canfor.