SHARING ECONOMY WILL DRIVE ECONOMIC GROWTH IF GOVERNMENTS MOVE QUICKLY AND BOLDLY: ONTARIO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE REPORT
TORONTO, AUGUST 25, 2015: In a new report, Harnessing the Power of the Sharing Economy, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC), in partnership with the Quinte West and Belleville Chambers of Commerce have called upon governments to move quickly and boldly to ensure that Canada and Ontario realize the full potential of the sharing economy. The report calls for immediate action to be taken to fill any insurance gaps and ensure tax compliance. If adopted, the recommendations would make Ontario the first jurisdiction in the world to take a comprehensive approach to address the growth of the sharing economy.
Fueled by companies such as Uber, Autoshare, and Airbnb, the sharing economy enables individuals to obtain rides, accommodations, and other goods and services from peers via online platforms.
The report finds that nearly two thirds of Ontarians believe that the growth of companies in the sharing economy is good for Ontario’s economy. It also finds that nearly 40 percent of young Ontarians (18-34) are consumers in the sharing economy.
“The sharing economy is growing at an incredible rate and the opportunity for Canada and Ontario is an important one,” said Allan O’Dette, President & CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. “Jurisdictions that are building adaptable regulatory and tax frameworks are more likely to produce new technologies that will drive economic growth.”
The report also finds that 1 in 5 Greater Toronto Area (GTA) residents have used the ride-hailing app. Only 1 in 5 Ontarians believe Uber should be banned from operating in the province.
“We need a regulatory regime that is able to adapt to changing economic conditions and is responsive to the emergence of new sectors,” said Suzanne Andrews, General Manager at the Quinte West Chamber of Commerce. “This kind of regulatory system is fair for both established operators and new market entrants.”
The report calls on governments of all levels to revisit the way they regulate.
“We need to accept that more and more business will be conducted over the internet, replacing historical business models,” said Bill Saunders, CEO at the Belleville Chamber of Commerce. “We are encouraging regulators and business leaders alike to adapt; ensuring that both established and new business can prosper in Ontario.”
Harnessing the Power of the Sharing Economy: Next Steps for Ontario is the product of several months of research by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. The report was informed by the results of a survey conducted by Leger in August 2015.
Link to full report https://quintewestchamber.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/The-Sharing-Economy.pdf