The Top 10 Opportunities for growth in Peterborough

In identifying the Top 10 Barriers to Competitiveness, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce got us thinking about the opportunities for Peterborough.  

The province is projecting the Ontario economy will grow by 2.2 percent in 2016, so what can Peterborough do to ensure that some of that growth happens here?

“If you view a challenge as an opportunity to be intentional in your focus,” says Jason Becker, BDO Canada LLP and Chair of the Peterborough Chamber Board of Directors, “then the outcome may be even more rewarding than had you not faced the challenge.”

Here are our  

Top 10 Opportunities for Peterborough:

  1. #TeamPtbo. Build and communicate the Peterborough brand.  Maximize the impact of the engaged group of individuals in our business ecosystem.  
  2. Airport. Ready for takeoff.  Developing the airport was an intentional decision by the City and County. 53,475 aircraft movements were facilitated at the Peterborough airport in 2015. We have existing serviced industrial lots, and 15 companies. The City also purchased the East of Airport Road land last year, which means there is the opportunity for more strategic development in this space. 
  3. Trent Research and Innovation Park. Set the stage for the future. The City and Trent University have partnered to build out the site adjacent to Trent with a focus on Clean Technology Sectors.  Noble Tech Inc. has announced it will build a $20 million plant and be the first tenant at the site.      
  4. Manufacturing. Honour our history, by succeeding in the present.  In the early 1900s Peterborough was viewed as an industrial hub and leader.  While the manufacturing sector has changed, there are 50-60 local businesses with ties to the Kawartha Manufacturers Association (KMA) and the Canadian Manufacturers’ and Exporters (CME).  These connections will help trigger opportunities into the future. Perhaps even recognition as an Advanced Manufacturing Consortium for Eastern Ontario as was announced for southwestern Ontario in the 2016 budget.  
  5. Agriculture and Rural Economic Development. Grow the future. Agriculture is a staple in the Peterborough economy generating over $400 million in economic activity each year. The provincial government has committed to continued support in the 2016 budget through programs such as the Eastern Ontario Development Fund (EODF) and the Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP).  This is essential with the push on food security and food safety.
  6. Nuclear. Power into the future. With the recent reinstatement of the Darlington Nuclear refurbishment we need to revitalize the local Nuclear Cluster.  In doing so, we will be able to capitalize on the opportunity to be a part of the supply chain and lobby for fair and balanced procurement for the project to ensure that there is local opportunity. 
  7. Tourism. Celebrate what Mother Nature gave us.  Our natural and many of our built attractions are connected to our environment.  The successful Travel Media conference in 2015 continues to bear fruit for this sector along with new projects such as the cycling partnership with Shimano Canada and various themed tours.  
  8. Entrepreneurship. Nurture the future.  An intentional and concerted effort has gone into building and creating a sustainable ecosystem for startups and new businesses.  In Canada, small business represents 98% of all firms and created 77.7% of all jobs between 2002 and 2012. This is expected to continue.  Our goal should be creating a framework to ensure these small companies can grow and be sustained successfully.  In the budget the province promised help to scale up small and medium-sized business.  The Peterborough Chamber is on an Ontario Chamber Taskforce examining the needs of business to do so with ease. 
  9. Harmonious Councils. We’re all in this together.  City of Peterborough and County of Peterborough councils need to continue to find new ways to work together to promote the area and create a climate where current and new businesses can flourish.  Just as in the business ecosystem, they must promote the Peterborough brand.
  10. Our First Nations. Partner for the future.  With three First Nations communities in the Peterborough region, we must foster a relationship that creates positive ties between our communities.    


 2015 Year in Review, City of Peterborough

 Fifty Facts About Peterborough, Ont., Canada, Peterborough Board of Trade circa 1900

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