For Immediate Release
June 1, 2021
VANCOUVER, B.C. —The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade, together with the members of the Canadian Travel and Tourism Roundtable (“The Roundtable”), is urging the federal government, in collaboration with the provinces, to release an implementation plan based on the recommendations made in the COVID-19 Testing and Screening Expert Advisory Panel (Expert Panel) report. Two notable British Columbians, Dr. Mel Krajen, the medical director of the BCCDC Public Health Laboratory and Sue Paish, CEO of Canada's Digital Technology Supercluster, joined ten other doctors and leaders on the Expert Panel.
The federal government convened the Expert Panel to provide independent, science- and data-driven recommendations to the federal government on testing, border restrictions and quarantine measures. The report, released on May 28, 2021, recommends eliminating quarantine for fully vaccinated travellers, implementing changes to testing and screening, and eliminating the hotel quarantine policy, among other things.
“It is crucial that the federal government work collaboratively with the provinces to begin to implement the recommendations of the Expert Panel on the reopening of travel,” said Bridgitte Anderson, President and CEO of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade. “In the same way that the B.C. Restart Plan built confidence of the path forward if we hit vaccine and public health criteria, we need a Pan-Canadian, science-based strategy for when businesses can resume travel, families can be reunited, and vaccinated travellers can return to support local jobs in B.C.”
Before the pandemic, YVR was the second busiest airport in Canada, hosting more then 25 million passengers and generating $16.5 billion in economic output. Since then, traffic in most months has declined by 90 per cent, significantly impacting the economy across British Columbia.
“It is going to take years for travel and tourism to recover from the impacts of the pandemic and for Vancouver to be the global city it once was,” noted Anderson. “We won’t get there without a clear plan and a path forward.”
Download full statement and background on the expert panel report
About the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade:
Since its inception in 1887, the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade has been recognized as Pacific Canada’s leading business association, engaging members to impact public policy at all levels of government and to succeed and prosper in the global economy. With a Membership whose employees comprise one-third of B.C.’s workforce, we are the largest business association between Victoria and Toronto. We leverage this collective strength, facilitating networking opportunities, and providing professional development through four unique Signature Programs. In addition, we operate one of the largest events programs in the country, providing a platform for national and international thought leaders to enlighten B.C.’s business leaders.
David van Hemmen
Greater Vancouver Board of Trade