Progress, but more work needs to be done to help industry still in recovery
Restaurants Canada President and CEO Christian Buhagiar issued the following statement on today’s Fall Economic Statement:
“Restaurants Canada commends the federal government for today’s Fall Economic Statement (FES) that contains three key initiatives that will help the food service sector, including lowering credit card fees and addressing labour shortages.
The Government of Canada’s commitment to take real action on credit card fees has the potential to meaningfully lower costs for our industry and our customers at a time when we are still rebuilding. While the outcome of the planned negotiations remains to be seen, the fact that the government is prepared to regulate fees if the card companies do not come to the table is promising. This commitment must be followed by action, and quickly.
We also applaud the federal government’s commitment of new funding to help increase immigration levels to address acute labour shortages. A reliable and capable supply of international workers that supplements our domestic workforce is critical given the demographic pressures faced within the economy, and especially within the foodservice sector. We are prepared to work with the government and our provincial and municipal partners as this funding is deployed, to ensure that implementation takes into consideration the unique needs of the foodservice sector.
Restaurants Canada also welcomes the federal government’s boost to funding for youth employment. As the leading provider of first jobs for Canada’s youth, our industry looks forward to working with the government to continue to provide great jobs for young people just entering the workforce.
Restaurants Canada plans to work closely with the government as these three key initiatives are implemented, to ensure that the unique circumstances and needs of our members are understood.
We will also continue to advocate for sector-specific commitments required to help the 90,000+ restaurants throughout Canada recover and rebuild, including pressing the government to take action on CEBA loans, which were not addressed in today’s statement.
We still have a long way to go to help our industry recover, but this is a good start.”