Many restaurants have closed in response to COVID-19. (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)

Businesses tepid toward B.C. COVID recovery plan, seek bold response: survey

Only 16 per cent of businesses were confident in B.C.’s restart plan and 47 per cent were not

The latest survey of businesses in British Columbia reveals few are confident the province’s $1.5-billion recovery plan will help them survive or succeed.

The survey of 1,401 member businesses from groups including the BC Chamber of Commerce, Greater Vancouver Board of Trade and Business Council of B.C. indicates owners want a bold, long-term recovery plan.

Only 16 per cent of businesses were confident in B.C.’s restart plan and 47 per cent were not.

Two-thirds of those surveyed were relying on some form of government support and owners were braced for a “second wave” of shutdowns or other problems if programs expire too quickly.

Some 28 per cent believed they’ll return to normal once programs end, 32 per cent expected to cut workers’ hours, 27 per cent anticipated layoffs, and one business in every 10 forecast either temporary or permanent closure.

Owners say payroll and wage supports must remain key components of B.C.’s recovery plan, along with fee and tax cuts.

The survey also identified expectations that the province must create better investment conditions.

Bridgitte Anderson, president and CEO of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade, says business viability hinges on those measures.

Val Litwin with the BC Chamber of Commerce urges policy-makers to ”stay sensitive” to the vulnerability of the business sector.

“A bold economic recovery plan that helps small businesses compete is non-negotiable for a prosperous B.C., and when small businesses thrive so do communities and people,” Litwin said in a statement.

“Governments must keep focused on delivering their recovery plans swiftly.”

The survey, conducted with the Mustel Group, is the fourth in a series examining the effects on B.C. businesses since the pandemic flared in March.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

The Local Store is currently open for online harvest orders. (Photo Contributed)
Local Store launches online harvest orders

The orders must be placed prior to Oct. 27 for pick-up or delivery on Oct 30

Top row, left to right: Tom Shypitka, BC Liberals; Wayne Stetski, BC NDP; Kerri Wall; BC Green Part
Kootenay East candidates messages

We offered each candidate in Kootenay East space to hold forth on issues important to them and to voters.

COVID-19. (Courtesy of CDC).
Interior Health reports 12 additional COVID-19 cases

The total number of cases in the region is now at 644

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Green party Leader Sonia Furstenau arrives to announce her party’s election platform in New Westminster, B.C., on October 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green party says it’s raised nearly $835,000 in 38 days

NDP Leader John Horgan is holding his final virtual campaign event

U.S. border officers at the Peace Arch crossing arrested two men on California warrants this week. (File photo)
Ottawa predicts system delays, backlogs unless court extends life of refugee pact

Canada and the United States recognize each other as safe places to seek protection

Most Read