CORNWALL, Ontario - Confidence in the Ontario economy, including the Cornwall area, has remained stable over the last 12 months according to results of a new survey rolled out this week.
The Cornwall and Area Chamber of Commerce said the annual Ontario Business Confidence Index shows that 40 per cent of surveyed businesses in the region are confident in Ontario’s economy, up less than one percentage point over the same time last year.
The index also shows that 70 per cent of the region’s businesses are confident in their own organization’s outlook, down marginally from the previous year. When asked about growing their business, 55 per cent of businesses say they plan to expand within the next five years, a marginal decrease from last year.
“It is important to understand that the region in question encompasses the National Capital region and Kingston as well as Cornwall,” said chamber president Kevin Hargreaves. “Because of that, there may be variances in the Cornwall area over the next year.”
The survey of businesses is featured in Emerging Stronger 2014, a business-driven economic agenda released by the Cornwall Chamber and authored by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, the Mowat Centre and Leger Marketing. The report identifies the immediate steps that government and the private sector must take to enhance Ontario’s economic competitiveness and spur job creation in the province.
“There are actions that government and business can do to boost our economy and business confidence,” says Allan O’Dette, President and CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. “But right now there is uncertainty in Ontario’s business climate, possibly as a result of potential changes to the pension system and rising energy costs.”
The survey’s findings for the Cornwall region indicate that:
- 70% of businesses are confident in their own economic outlook, roughly two percentage points below the provincial average.
- 55.3% of businesses plan to expand in the next five years.
- Only 34% of businesses believe that Ontario’s economy is headed in the right direction, approximately eight percentage points below the provincial average.
- 52% of the region’s businesses are confident in Ontario’s economy, an increase of over 5 percentage points over the same time last year.