Isn’t Quebec supposed to be a bad place to do business?

« Montreal has one of the lowest overall tax rates of any metropolis in the world »

Says who?

Says Montreal Gazette which is not known to be a nest of separatist propagandists.

« Wait a minute, back up. Isn’t Quebec supposed to be a bad place to do business?

High corporate taxes, high income taxes, the extra cost of obligatory French documents and packaging and signs, prime commercial real estate that’s scarce, overvalued and overtaxed, strong unions, strict environmental laws, mandatory French school for the kids — the impediments to setting up shop in this part of North America are numerous.

Or so goes the popular wisdom, some of it fuelled by studies like a recent Fraser Institute report, which claimed Quebec’s “economic freedom” and prosperity is being curtailed by, in the words of one of the Vancouver think tank’s senior fellows, “big government, high taxes, unaffordable social programs and difficult labour relations.”

Well, it might be a bum rap.« 

(Source Montreal Gazette)

The Gazette adds :  » Montreal has one of the lowest overall tax rates of any metropolis in the world, second only in Canada to Vancouver. Yes, it costs extra to do everything in French here, deal with unions and reduce pollution, but that’s compensated for by gaining access to Canada’s second-largest consumer market. »

Yes, second largest consumer market. We tend to forget that. Some seem to think that companies come here for charitable purposes. Well, no, we are a market that is worthed something.

“… we saw that as an opportunity — I mean, Quebec is such a large market. It would have been hard to just skip it.” says Target Canada spokesman.
De la musique à mes oreilles.

4 réflexions au sujet de « Isn’t Quebec supposed to be a bad place to do business? »

  1. AM

    Taxes are just one aspect of doing business Michel. And Quebec is a large market so of course major corporations need to have a presence here. But check out this article -also from the Gazette- about how retailers (including Target, which you cite) build their distribution centers and logistics infrastructure outside of Quebec, just across the border in Cornwall. They basically just try keep the minimum in Quebec (the stores) and everything else from administration to logistics is somewhere else.

    Just think about this, this is thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars worth of economic activity that really should be done in Quebec but is not due to many of the factors mentioned by the Fraser Institute.

    1. The Ubbergeek

      Fraser Institute, it’s one bastion of neoliberalism and WASP power it seems.

      I would listen to such guys or Institut Économique de Montréal with HEAVY grains of salt, they are more like propagnadists of rightwing ideology specially for the later.

      1. AM

        Ubergeek, whatever ideology the Fraser Institute might have has nothing to do with the fact that these distribution centres were in fact built in Ontario even though they supply the Quebec market.

        If it wasn’t because of the factors FI mentions, what is the reason then? Some conspiracy by Anglos/American corporations/ROC/the federal government/etc. to keep the Quebec economy down?

        And thanks for the advice, but I do take whatever I read with a grain of salt, no matter what source it comes from.

        1. The Ubbergeek

          Ideology on the contrary is VERY important. And it’s dangerous error to think ONLY the left fall into this.

          To ignore the surge of rightwing propaganda pumped out daily in big medias like Quebecor’s, pushed by groups like Institut Économique de MOntréal, etc, is dangerous.

          And it’s a big part of this. Capitalism in theory don’t give a frag about language. If one day, by a weird twist of events Turkey by example would become a masssive power, economically speaking, you would see the push for turkish language courses…

          That said…

          BUT as well – yes, you have points. There is also the fact that canada and anglo-canadians do have their own nationalism too, and they did MUCH in the past, and still do, to assimilate, push away, etc revendications of the others – the sore state of amerindians as shown by idle No More is a BIG proof of this.

          Conspiracy? Not. But usual push of a certain chauvinism,
          racism in some cases ? yeah.

          It’s sad how there IS a double standarts toward non WASP, non anglos, and I do not mean just francos there.

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