Created with: Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME)
January 2011

Open for Business is Ontario’s initiative to create faster, smarter and streamlined government-to-business services and to establish a modern system of government by 2011. It’s a key part of the Ontario government’s commitment to make the Province more attractive to business while continuing to protect the public interest.

Open for Business has three key areas of focus:

  • Modern government – create a streamlined and focused regulatory environment that delivers results for business, while protecting public interest
  • Modern services – deliver better products, including service standards that support business needs
  • New relationship with business – create an open and responsive working relationship between business and government

Ontario’s Business Sector Strategy

One of the ways Open for Business is implementing a new relationship with business is through the Ontario Business Sector Strategy which establishes an open dialogue and collaborative relationship between government and key business stakeholders.

Under the strategy, sector representatives are asked to identify five priorities under jurisdiction of the provincial government that would strengthen their sector’s success. Ministries have two months to address these priorities, or explain why they cannot be addressed and deliver alternative solutions. This joint understanding of priorities allows government and the business sector to work together more effectively to generate economic growth, create jobs for Ontario families, and protect the public interest.

Open for Business is responsible for interfacing with ministries to ensure progress and resolution of each sector’s issues within appropriate timelines.

Manufacturing sector

Ontario’s manufacturing industry generates $270 billion in annual sales and accounts for 18% of the province’s GDP, employing over 12% of Ontario’s total workforce.

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) is Canada’s largest industry and trade association, representing businesses in all sectors of manufacturing and exporting activity across Canada. Through their partnerships with other associations, CME's network extends to more than 100,000 companies from coast to coast, engaged in manufacturing, global business and service-related industries.

Manufacturing and Ontario’s Business Sector Strategy

On August 18, 2010, Minister of Economic Development and Trade Sandra Pupatello held a roundtable with senior members of CME and other business leaders from the manufacturing sector. Joining the discussion were deputy ministers, and representatives from Cabinet Office, Open for Business, and the ministries identified in CME's priorities: Economic Development and Trade, Environment, Energy, and Labour.

Over a two-month period sector representatives and senior staff from the targeted ministries worked to arrive at mutually acceptable government responses to CME's priorities. Economic Development and Trade Minister Sandra Pupatello acknowledged that the process had been challenging. "This sector is made up of a broad, diversified group of industries, each with their own needs." Rob Hattin, Chair, CME Ontario Board of Directors and Vice Chair of the CME National Board of Directors agreed. "It has been hard work and frustrating for both sides. But Open for Business is a critical process and we appreciate the government’s leadership in moving the process forward."

While much was accomplished during the Sector Strategy process, much still remains to be addressed. Plans are in place to move forward, and both the CME and government pledged their commitment to work together to achieve their mutually held goal to help Ontario grow and prosper.

Through the Ontario Business Sector Strategy, a foundation of collaboration and openness between government and business is being established that will continue to grow in the coming years.

Executive summary: Top priorities

 CME's Top Five PrioritiesGovernment Response to CME's Top Five Priorities
Priority 1: Regulatory Impact on ManufacturersCME recommended that the Ontario Regulatory Policy require an economic impact assessment be conducted each time a change in regulation or legislation is being considered by government, and that the Regulatory Policy be enshrined in regulation. The Association further requested that the assessment be transparent, allow for business participation and feature effective oversight to ensure adherence to the regulation. Lastly, CME requested a financial offset to help manufacturers manage an increase of compliance costs associated with regulatory change.Ontario will introduce a mandatory regulatory economic impact assessment tool across all ministries, ensuring consistent and reliable analyses. To capture business input, consultation principles are in development with CME. Open for Business is considering enshrining the Regulatory Policy in regulation and a determination on this request is anticipated by early 2011. In regards to CME's request for a financial offset, the parameters of the Business Sector Strategy note that priorities with financial implications cannot be entertained.
Priority 2: Total Bill Impact Assessment for EnergyCME urged the Ministry of Energy to support CME's initiative to have the Ontario Energy Board establish a multi-year total bill impact analysis format for each electricity utility to complete and present when seeking approval for increases in its electricity rates. CME also asked that the ministry direct the Ontario Power Authority to adopt a total bill impact analysis for planning purposes.The Ministry of Energy will work with the Ontario Energy Board to produce a report that outlines the total bill by cost component for all utilities based on a typical manufacturer’s consumption. Furthermore, informal information sessions will be held between senior ministry staff and the CME to discuss pricing issues. The ministry has included CME in consultations on the development of the long-term energy plan and will ensure that the suggestion to use total bill impact analysis is considered for inclusion in the plan.
Priority 3: Toxics Reduction ActCME recommended that the Toxics Reduction Act recognize and allow equivalency for existing environmental management programs to reduce the administrative burden for substance accounting. They also asked the ministry to reduce the administrative burden by grouping common substances together and require the creation of records for the group only.The Ministry of the Environment will ensure that guidance materials will be clear when existing prevention plans can be used and when supplemental information will be required. The ministry will work with CME on accounting and reporting requirements for specific substances and for substances in closed processes (January 31, 2011) and finalize accounting guidelines by January 31, 2011. The ministry met with CME (January 13, 2011) and other stakeholders (November 22, 2010) to discuss planner qualifications and requirements. On November 30, 2010, the Ministry of Environment posted a proposal to extend the timeline for toxic substance Phase I plans and plan summaries by one year. By Spring 2011, the ministry will establish a multi-stakeholder committee to assess and identify proposed updates to the prescribed lists of toxic substances and substances of concern.
Priority 4: Air Standards (Reg. 419/05)CME recommended that the government work towards a sustainable approach for developing standards and develop a policy to deal with the standards when obtaining a certificate of approval in order to maintain a timely approvals process.CME and the Ministry of the Environment agreed to meet in November 2010 and January 2011 to address air standards concerns and explore possible solutions. The ministry welcomes broad stakeholder involvement in the development of sustainable environmental regulations, and by February 3, 2010 the ministry will present a proposal to update the current terms of reference to the Multi-Stakeholder Group. The ministry, as well as other ministries, will use the new Regulatory Economic Assessment Tool (Priority #1) for new regulations, when it is rolled out by the government, and will work with MEDT and CME to develop a protocol to support the development of high quality regulatory impact assessments. The ministry will continue to consult with CME as well as other stakeholders on policy and regulatory initiatives.
Priority 5: Ministry of Labour Inspectorate ChallengesCME suggested that a more formalized process be developed to address regulatory challenges and leverage solutions to manage the demands of increasing administrative issues. On a broader scale, CME suggested that the new process could help improve communications and the overall relationship between government and business.The Ministry of Labour and CME have agreed to establish a Client Service Sub-committee and a Policy and Legislation Sub-committee to discuss key issues. The ministry will adopt a stronger client focus and work with CME to identify communication improvements and service enhancements to help employers, including small businesses, meet workplace health and safety obligations and achieve compliance with existing and new regulations.

Priority 1: Regulatory impact on manufacturers

CME recommended that the Ontario Regulatory Policy include an economic impact assessment for each potential change in regulation or legislation, and that the Regulatory Policy be enshrined in regulation. The Association further requested that the assessment be transparent, allow for business participation and feature effective oversight to ensure adherence to the regulation. Lastly, CME asked for an offset to help manufacturers manage an increase of compliance costs associated with regulatory change.

Government response

(Lead: Ministry of Economic Development & Trade/Open for Business; Associated Ministries: Cabinet Office)

Open for Business will implement a mandatory, regulatory economic impact assessment tool across government that will:

  • Include a standard analytical framework and toolkit to estimate the direct compliance costs of proposed regulations on external stakeholders
  • Utilize Statistics Canada data for consistent and reliable analyses
  • Invite stakeholder engagement in advance of the decision-making process
  • Apply to new and proposed amendments to regulations

The tool is based on a widely implemented, proven approach to economic impact assessment currently in use as part of regulatory development processes by the Government of Canada, several provinces, other jurisdictions around the world (e.g., European Union countries, the United States, etc.), and will calculate four types of direct compliance costs:

  • Financial Costs (e.g., permits, fees and charges, etc.)
  • Upfront Operating Costs (e.g., signage/notifications, training, new equipment, etc.)
  • Ongoing Operating Costs (e.g., technology upgrades, equipment maintenance, etc.)
  • Administrative costs (e.g., applications for permits, record keeping, etc.)

Consultation principles will be created to help strengthen the role of business in the regulatory decision-making process, ensuring that business is engaged early in the process and in a predictable manner. Initial principles have been developed:

  • Timely Consultation – Any engagement should begin when issues are identified allowing for careful consideration and commenting by consultation participants and when advice can be incorporated into any resulting action.
  • Clear Communication of Consultation Purpose – The issues at stake and reasons for consultation should be clearly communicated to business stakeholders. Where possible, participants should help to define outcomes.
  • Accessible Consultation – Tools and methods of consultation should be selected to maximize the opportunities for stakeholder participation.
  • Minimize the Burden of Consultation – Government to internally coordinate consultation activities to ensure a streamlined process and more meaningful engagement.
  • Acknowledge and Analyse Consultation Submissions – Government will provide stakeholders with an acknowledgement of their submission and analysis of the advice provided in the consultation within a defined timeframe.
  • Feedback Mechanism – Inviting business comment on the consultation process will allow for continuous improvement.

CME will provide principles describing the role that business can play in effective consultations and these will be included with those noted above.

The implementation strategy will ensure quality control and oversight by:

  • Amending the Legislation and Regulations Committee templates and instructions to require the economic assessment analysis to be profiled in regulatory proposals
  • Ensuring ministry accountability by continuing to require Ministers and Deputy Ministers to sign-off on all proposals
  • Continuing to include Cabinet Office review of the quality of analysis presented in the proposals
  • Driving analytical quality and ministry accountability through early and meaningful consultation with stakeholders
  • Implementing an enterprise-wide process to track and report on Ontario Public Service compliance

The regulatory assessment tool will be implemented via a phased approach:

  • Open for Business will conduct internal education and training sessions
  • Open for Business and Cabinet Office will finalize the business consultation guidelines (early 2011)
  • Tool will initially be implemented with key regulatory ministries
  • Full implementation of the tool across all ministries

Open for Business is exploring CME's request to enshrine Ontario’s Regulatory Policy in regulation with legal counsel and is also conducting an analysis of approaches in other jurisdictions. The Minister of Economic Development and Trade is anticipated to make a determination on this request by early 2011.

In the meantime, Ontario will continue to implement and enforce the Ontario Regulatory Policy, a government policy that all ministries are required to follow per the legal requirements under the Ontario-Quebec Trade and Cooperation Agreement. Cabinet Office and Open for Business will oversee ministries' compliance with the requirements through internal tracking and reporting.

Due to the parameters of the Business Sector Strategy, CME's request for an offset (e.g. tax credit) where a regulatory change would increase the cost to business cannot be entertained. It should be noted that regulatory changes are never proposed lightly and are often introduced to ensure a smooth, efficient and effective marketplace or to protect the health and safety of Ontarians.

Priority 2: Total bill impact assessment for energy

CME requested that the Ministry of Energy direct the Ontario Power Authority to adopt a total bill impact analysis for planning purposes.

Furthermore, CME urged the ministry to have the Ontario Energy Board establish a multi-year total bill impact analysis, or ‘end of wire' cost, for each electricity distributor. This analysis would be presented when seeking Board approval for increases in electricity rates. This analysis would provide transparency and help manufacturers to make investment decisions and accommodate anticipated energy costs in their overall operating plans.

Government response

(Lead: Ministry of Energy; Associated Ministries/Agencies: Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, Ontario Energy Board, Ontario Power Authority)

In their response, the Ministry of Energy explained the ‘arm’s length' relationship between the ministry and the Ontario Energy Board and the independent rate-making process.

The ministry noted that an Integrated Power System Plan, a long-term energy plan for the province, was currently in development. The ministry committed to:

  • Ensuring that consideration is given to directing the Ontario Power Authority to take total bill impacts on consumers into account
  • Continuing to include CME in the development of the plan

During the Sector Strategy process, CME and the ministry agreed that greater transparency around electricity rates, including key cost drivers, and improved reporting that clearly breaks-out the overall costs would be useful. It was noted that the Board’s independent rate-making process is guided by legislation that considers consumers' interests regarding price, adequacy and reliability of service, and it was agreed that this independent rate-setting process should remain untouched.

The ministry will work with the Ontario Energy Board to produce a report that sets out the total bill for each distributor by cost component for a typical manufacturer following distributor rate decisions made by the Ontario Energy Board. Furthermore, informal information sessions will be held between senior ministry staff and the CME to discuss pricing issues.

CME and the ministry declared their intent to maintain the dialogue to ensure that business input is reflected in the long-term Integrated Power System Plan.

Ontario Energy Board

The Board regulates the province’s electricity and gas sectors in the public interest.

Ontario Power Authority

The Ontario Power Authority is responsible for ensuring a reliable, sustainable supply of electricity for Ontario. Licensed by the Ontario Energy Board, it reports to the Ontario Legislature through the Ministry of Energy.

Priority 3: Toxics Reduction Act

CME clearly supports meeting the intent of the Toxics Reduction Act in an efficient and effective manner. The following recommended solutions for delivering efficiencies are positive steps. However, it should be noted that these steps are unlikely to meet industry’s primary concerns and as such, CME support for the recommendations is reserved.

Recognizing existing programs

For specific circumstances, to be further defined but includes examples such as copper used in copper cable manufacturing, reduce administrative burden for substance accounting by:

  • Defining subprocesses at a facility identical to the sub facility defined in the National Pollutant Release Inventory (NPRI).
  • Utilizing the data reported to NPRI for substance accounting.
  • Substituting relevant components of existing pollution prevention planning programs, such as ISO Plans, Environmental Management Systems (EMS) and Pollution Prevention (P2) Plans in place of detailed accounting and reduction plans.
  • Grouping substances and creating records for the group only.

Toxic planner qualifications

CME supports the need for plans to be reviewed by competent persons, but believes that there are more effective approaches than licensing. Industry has provided substantive and relatively aligned feedback on the appropriate approach for planner function that will more effectively meet objectives.

Rethink implementation timing

Based on uncertainty associated with the lack of guidance and potential for more efficient accounting approaches, CME supports delaying the entire program.

Incorporation of risk

CME noted that industry was not involved in the process to define the list of substances deemed ‘toxic' under the Act. Furthermore, CME felt the list of substances was not risk based and, as a result, the administration for accounting and planning for a substance is the same regardless of its hazard or exposure.

Toxics Reduction Act

The Toxics Reduction Act is part of Ontario’s strategy to reduce toxics in air, land, water and consumer products. Under the Act, regulations would require prescribed facilities to track and evaluate their current use, creation, and releases of toxics, develop plans to reduce the use and creation of toxics, and make reports and summaries of their plans available to the public.

Government response

(Lead: Ministry of the Environment)

Recognize Equivalency of Existing Program

The Toxics Reduction Act is flexible and recognizes that industry has the greatest level of expertise to identify the appropriate number of stages and processes to satisfy this requirement. The Ministry of the Environment will work with CME on a priority basis on accounting and reporting requirements for copper, nickel and zinc and substances in closed processes by January 31, 2011, and will finalize the accounting guidelines by this date.

Recognize existing programs

Existing Environmental Management Systems (i.e., ISO 14001) could be used to meet requirements of the Act. Where necessary, facilities may need to provide supplemental information on substances or processes not included in International Organization for Standardization Standards (ISO) plans, Environmental Management Systems (EMS) or Pollution Prevention (P2) Plans. The Ministry of the Environment will ensure sector guidance materials, and planners' curriculum and compliance direction will be clear that existing ISO Plans, EMS and P2 plans can be used to meet requirements of the Act. The ministry will work with identified industrial sectors to develop sector specific guidance documents to show efficiencies in using existing documents and to identify when supplemental information will be required. By June 2011, the ministry will work with five sectors on sector specific guidance and continue on an on-going basis with other sectors. The ministry will work with CME and individual sectors to demonstrate, through guidance material, efficiencies in creating records for groups of substances.

Toxic planner qualifications

The Act requires certification of plans; the regulation will specify the qualifications required for planners. The Ministry of the Environment considers this important to ensure quality and that the required elements are included in the plans. This is especially important for those facilities that do not have existing ISO, EMS or Pollution Prevention Plans. By February 28, 2011 the ministry will meet with CME to discuss planner qualifications and requirements.

Rethink implementation timing

The Ministry of the Environment is proposing to recommend a regulatory amendment to delay the requirement for certified toxic substance reduction Phase I plans and plan summaries by one year to ensure sufficient time for industry to undertake thorough planning and to develop meaningful toxics substance reduction plans.

Incorporation of risk

The Ministry of the Environment, in consultation with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and Cancer Care Ontario and as advised by the Minister’s Toxics Reduction Scientific Expert Panel, identified a list of 47 priority substances for Phase I. This list includes 23 carcinogens and 19 substances identified as toxic by the Canadian Environmental Protection Act.

The ministry will work with certain sectors to create sector specific guidance documents for plans, accounting, and reporting compliance policy to cover those substances for which there are no known substitutes in the production process (e.g. copper, nickel, zinc).

Priority 4: Air standards (Reg. 419/05)

CME recommends that the government work towards a sustainable approach for developing standards and develop a policy to deal with the standards when obtaining a certificate of approval in order to maintain a timely approvals process.

CME recommended the use of the Regulatory Impact Assessment policy and tools include industry input covering business analysis and impacts, and this will be considered during the development of new or amended regulations.

CME proposed to meet with the Ministry of the Environment to review and discuss CME proposed solutions, and explore alternative approaches to address concerns related to:

  • A balanced interpretation of science
  • Short-term standards
  • Expanded compliance assessment
  • A draft Terms of Reference for an independent review of Combined Air Monitoring Model (CAMM)
  • A distinction between planned and unplanned operations (Start-up Shut-down Malfunction) prior to the issues being tabled at the Multi-stakeholder Group.

Ontario Regulation 419/05

This is the primary regulatory tool used for the assessment and implementation of air standards to protect local air quality in our communities.

Government response

(Lead: Ministry of the Environment)

Regulatory Impact Assessment Tool (RIA)

The Ministry of the Environment will implement the RIA tool according to government direction on new regulations. For new regulations, the ministry will consult with CME and other stakeholders to receive input on the impacts of proposed regulations.

By spring 2011, the ministry will work with CME and other industry stakeholders to develop a protocol to support the development of high quality regulatory impact assessments. The protocol will address how to engage industry members of varying sizes (small, medium and large), evaluate their capacity to respond and provide guidelines for addressing the impact of the proposed regulation on the wide range of industries within the manufacturing sector.

Air standards issues

CME is continuing to meet with the ministry to review and discuss CME proposed solutions, and explore alternative approaches to address concerns prior to issues being tabled at the Multi-stakeholder group.

On November 29, 2010, the ministry met with CME to discuss:

  • A ‘balanced interpretation of the science:' CME presented a written draft improvement proposal for discussion. A follow up meeting is scheduled for January 26, 2011.
  • Short-term standards: CME presented a written draft improvement proposal for discussion and the ministry tabled a draft position for discussion. Follow-up discussions occurred on December 13, 2010, January 6 and January 13, 2011.
  • Expanded Compliance Assessment: This meeting was combined with the discussion regarding short term standards. CME presented a written draft improvement proposal for discussion and the ministry also presented a draft framework for discussion. Follow-up discussions occurred on December 13, 2010, January 6 and January 13, 2011.

The ministry met with CME on November 28, 2010, December 17, 2010 and January 13, 2011 to refine a draft Terms of Reference for an independent review of Combined Air Monitoring Model (CAMM):

  • The scope of the review will deal with specific technical issues, the components, outputs, and how the model can be improved in its application.
  • The independent review is to be completed by September 2011.

The Ministry of the Environment met with CME on November 19, December 9, 2010 to develop a distinction between planned and unplanned operations (Start-up Shut-down Malfunction). The ministry tabled, for discussion, both a policy flow chart and operating scenarios for the refining and smelting sectors. CME presented information to support the understanding of the distinction.

Multi-stakeholder consultation

The Ministry of the Environment and CME agree that success relies on stakeholders being involved in the development of solutions.

The ministry will work with CME and other stakeholders to set a framework and objectives for stakeholder involvement in developing solutions. By January 30, 2011, the Ministry of the Environment will work with CME and other stakeholders to update the terms of reference of the Multi-Stakeholder Group, including framework and objectives for stakeholder involvement and will update the Multi-Stakeholder Group on results of the discussions with CME.

Priority 5: Ministry of Labour inspectorate challenges

During the business sector strategy process held to address this priority, CME noted challenges with respect to the consistency of approach amongst Ministry of Labour inspectors. As a result, CME has recommended the following:

  • Develop a more formalized process to deal with regulatory challenges and leverage solutions to deal with increasing administrative issues
  • Provide greater clarity on how legislation and regulations apply in the workplace
  • Address the complexity of specific regulations that compromise an employer’s ability to both comply and operate their business (e.g. personal emergency leave, hours of work, overtime and vacation provisions)
  • Explore issues of inspectorate consistency regarding the enforcement of legislation and regulations

Government response

(Lead: Ministry of Labour)

Formalized process

To create a more formalized process, the ministry and CME have agreed to establish a Client Service Sub-committee and a Policy and Legislation Sub-committee to discuss key issues, exchange ideas and information, and share concerns. By developing a mutual understanding of key sector concerns and public policy imperatives, members of these committees will explore opportunities for collaboration and resolution of key challenges. The ministry and CME have finalized the terms of reference for the committees which will meet at least twice per annum.

The ministry will strengthen its client focus and will work with CME to identify how overall communication can be improved and how service to employers can be enhanced to help employers, including small businesses, meet workplace health and safety obligations and achieve compliance with existing and new regulations.

Greater clarity

The ministry will work with CME to help enhance a stronger client service focus. As a first step, inspectors will identify services offered by Health and Safety Associations that provide information to employers with the aim of assisting employers achieve compliance.

Further consultation between the CME, Health and Safety Associations, and the ministry will help to determine how to increase the capacity to serve these employers. In the meantime, the ministry has invited the CME to identify compliance tools that can be improved or suggest new tools that will help business increase their level of compliance. Furthermore, the ministry will respond to CME questions regarding the issue of ‘consistency' which CME can distribute to their members. More ‘question and answer' activities will follow, addressing other similar issues.

In advance of a conveyer guarding and lock out inspection blitz in November 2010, the ministry held an information session for CME members to identify measures and available resources to assist employers to achieve compliance and a successful inspection outcome.

The ministry has held an information session for CME members to address implementation concerns regarding the new workplace violence provisions of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. In addition, the CME has been invited to canvass their membership to determine other specific issues that could be addressed in future sessions. The ministry is prepared to offer additional information sessions if the CME has found these sessions beneficial.

Complexity of specific regulations

In addressing the complexity of regulations cited in the CME's priority, the ministry has outlined several next steps. In regards to regulations pertaining to Vacation Pay and Personal Emergency Leave provisions, the ministry will identify ways to better communicate Program Policies that can assist with interpretation and application of the Employment Standards Act, 2000.

To address the Hours of Work and Personal Emergency Leave provisions, the ministry will further analyze the impact of these provisions and identify non-regulatory solutions within the context of an Employment Standards Modernization Strategy. The ministry has invited the CME to participate in this exercise and would like to engage employers and labour stakeholders in discussion of this issue over the next 12 months.

Inspectorate consistency

The ministry welcomes CME's offer to participate in inspector training and has provided the Code of Professionalism that outlines the ministry’s expectations of inspector conduct, a CD of the ministry’s operational health and safety policy, and the procedures manual. The ministry has invited CME to participate in a managers' training session in early 2011.

To help small businesses meet workplace health and safety obligations, the ministry will work with CME and Health and Safety Associations to identify specific sectors that could benefit from customized information sessions and supports. This effort is targeted for completion by December 2011.

As part of an ongoing commitment to improve enforcement consistency, the ministry has taken the following steps:

  • Development of Program Advisory Committees for the construction, industrial, health care and mining sectors. These committees are comprised of inspectors, regional program specialists and program managers from across the province and meet regularly to identify emerging enforcement issues and ensure they are addressed consistently
  • Outreach to senior leaders at the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board and Health and Safety Associations to ensure that the appropriate system partner provides the appropriate support and avoids duplication of efforts
  • Creation of a Total Quality Management and Quality Assurance Quality Control initiative (anticipated implementation 2011) to ensure consistent, high quality reports. CME input during the development of these initiatives is welcome and may be provided via the Client Service Sub-committee

Conclusion

The need for and the potential of the Business Sector Strategy process was clearly demonstrated during the discussions between CME and the government. While the exercise was not without its challenges, over a period of two months, CME and other sector business leaders worked with the government to create a foundation for a more effective partnership. Over the coming weeks, months and years, this relationship will result in increased business consultation, a reduction of administrative burdens for business, enhanced transparency, and improvements in client service.

It is clear that the manufacturing sector and the government share common ground regarding generating economic growth, creating jobs for Ontario families and protecting the public interest. It is equally evident that where more understanding and cooperation is required is in the details – how these goals can be achieved while ensuring that business objectives and societal needs are both addressed.

Sandra Pupatello, Minister of Economic Development and Trade noted that, "Just because it’s complicated doesn't mean that we can't move the yardstick. It has been decades since this kind of interaction between business and government has taken place. We're not finished…there’s more to be done, but we're committed to continuing the process."