Premier trumpets P.E.I.’s good news
Premier Wade MacLauchlan gets occasional criticism for being too much a cheerleader and overly optimistic about Prince Edward Island. The premier tends to put on his rosecoloured glasses every chance he gets when it comes to promoting his native province. And that isn’t a bad thing.
It’s refreshing to hear good news stories about P.E.I. that often tend to get overlooked. We need a boost to our provincial spirit — at least every now and then.
Islanders can easily forgive the premier for indulging himself with a virtual buffet of good news this week when he delivered his first State of the Province address to a joint meeting of Rotarians. It was a golden opportunity to provide some good cheer to Islanders on this cold, wintry week in late January.
In fact, there are many good news stories out there and we need to be reminded of them. Too often, bad news is what gets our attention and we are in danger of slipping into a storm of life state of mind. Islanders got a liberal dose of spring tonic Monday.
As the premier has pointed out before, this province, with its diversified economy, isn’t as prone to the boom or bust cycles which affect manufacturing-based Ontario or resource-based Alberta. We have a solid mix of various small industries that protects against those cycles.
There are jobs out there. Just check the local job banks. Granted, many of the ones being posted are for specialized positions and require training but it shows Island businesses are being innovative and adapting to changing technologies and markets.
The premier isn’t content to let business come knocking. He is taking his booster club show on the road, joining with Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne to co-lead a trade mission to India this spring and then he’s off to Europe in June on another trade mission to ensure P.E.I. taps into the Canada-European Trade Agreement.
The lower Canadian dollar does offer opportunities for increased exports and reducing our trade imbalance is one of Premier MacLauchlan’s top priorities. The premier cited example after example Monday where Islanders are succeeding. We are small enough to react quickly to changing trends and technologies. We can do things differently and we can do them well.
The premier left no doubt — the economy will be his government’s greatest priority in 2016 and beyond.
There is nothing wrong with cheerleading. The premier wants to instill confidence and optimism. They are merely states of mind but Islanders can achieve great things if we truly believe in them.