Ottawa Citizen

Trudeau hires BCG’s Berz to advise Ottawa on foreign investment

Will join Privy Council in effort to attract interest from global firms


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government is bringing in a Boston Consulting Group adviser to help it attract more foreign investment.

Kilian Berz, a senior partner and managing director at BCG’s Toronto office, will join the Privy Council Office, a branch of the public service that reports to Trudeau. Reached by phone Monday, Berz confirmed he’ll keep his position at BCG and won’t be paid for his government work.

He said he intends to focus on coordinati­ng ministries, provinces and municipali­ties in attracting investment in Canada from major global firms.

“I’m honoured by the mandate and I look forward to working with the prime minister on this opportunit­y,” Berz said, adding he was drawn to the post by “an unparallel­ed opportunit­y for Canada to share the advantages we have as a country.”

Berz will join the Canadian delegation to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerlan­d, this week — a trip Trudeau backed out of — and will provide insight on foreign investment from a privatesec­tor perspectiv­e.

It’s not the first time Trudeau’s government has reached outside its ranks for advice. The Liberals convened a so-called growth council led by McKinsey & Co.’s Dominic Barton, which made its first batch of recommenda­tions in October, including that the government should create a special agency to attract foreign investment.

The government said in November it would spend $218 million over five years to create a so-called Invest in Canada Hub and hire more trade commission­ers, and Trudeau announced Canada would raise its threshold for government review of foreign takeovers to $1 billion sometime in 2017, two years sooner than scheduled.

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