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Small business focus of minister's visit

NOVEMBER 17, 2018 – The federal government has been provided with the North Okanagan perspective on small business.
On Nov. 17, the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce hosted Mary Ng, minister of small business and export promotion, at Okanagan College.
“I am here to listen,” said Ng, who is Member of Parliament for Markham-Thornhill, Ont.
Among the issues raised by members of the chamber and residents were succession planning for small business operators, provincial trade barriers, the need for more women entrepreneurs, the role of technology and community infrastructure that encourages business.
“We appreciate the minister taking time to stop in Vernon and hear first-hand about the opportunities and challenges small business owners experience,” said Dione Chambers, Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce general manager.
“Small business is a major economic driver by not only employing thousands of people, but by serving as a catalyst for entrepreneurs to expand beyond the grassroots and grow. It was encouraging to hear that the minister shares the chamber’s vision about supporting small business.”
The federal government has been pursuing trade agreements around the world, and Ng says North Okanagan businesses can benefit.
“My job is to help businesses start up, scale up and access new markets. The world wants and needs more Canada. Our global brand is strong.”
Ng said she would present the feedback from the Vernon meeting to her colleagues in Ottawa.
Also attending the Nov. 17 session were Byron Louis, Okanagan Indian Band chief, and Mel Arnold, North Okanagan-Shuswap MP.
The Greater Vernon Chamber represents more than 550 businesses in the North Okanagan and is an active member of both the BC Chamber of Commerce and the Canadian Chamber. The BC Chamber is the largest and most broadly-based business organization in the province. Representing more than 125 Chambers of Commerce and 36,000 businesses of every size, sector and region of the province, the BC Chamber of Commerce is “The Voice of Business in B.C.”
Dione Chambers, General Manager
Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce                             
T : 250.545.0771