Focus trade on emerging markets, Carney urges
Last Updated: Friday, June 18, 2010 | 2:04 PM NT
Canada must shift its trade focus toward emerging economies, Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney told East Coast oil executives on Friday.
Canada has long been dependent on the nearby U.S. economy to drive exports. But emerging markets account for two-thirds of global growth and are key engines of the worldwide economic recovery, Carney said.
The central bank head said in St. John's that countries such as China, India and Brazil are becoming growing centres of economic power. Their rapidly growing economies also have a big impact on the price of oil, metals and other commodities, the motors of Canada's resources economy.
Carney said that slow growth in the United States and ongoing economic restructuring in North American industry means Canadian companies have to find new global markets to thrive and grow.
Carney made the remarks to the Newfoundland and Labrador Oil and Gas Industries Association.
The text of his speech was very similar to one he gave a Halifax audience earlier this week, in which he warned of a coming "age of austerity" as governments and citizens the world over struggle to bring down debt levels.
On Friday, he took the opportunity to again bang the drum on productivity — Canada's low rate being a frequent source of angst for central bankers and economists.
Productivity fell in the latest recession, the first time this has happened in three decades, Carney noted.
"Despite the availability of capital, relatively strong balance sheets and improving economic conditions, business investment has been subdued compared with past downturns," Carney said.
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