Last week, the provincial New Democrats announced - as part of the party's plan to spur economic activity if it forms government - they would "expand BC's trade promotion with 6 new offices to take advantage of emerging trade opportunities." But not only does the party not know where some of those offices will be located, it's also following in the footsteps of an initiative launched four years ago by the Campbell administration.
On February 8, 2005, the government promised to open a "network of B.C. Trade and Cultural Centres in key international markets that will work to make B.C.'s products available to the rest of the world." And, by this end of the summer, the government is scheduled to have nine such trade and investment offices across the globe.
The New Democrats, without saying so, have committed to expand on that promise. But, in an interview with Public Eye, party communications officer Chris Gainor wasn't able to say where those offices will be located.
"We haven't made a decision on all six of them," said Mr. Gainor. "I think there are some thoughts about some of them. But we're not ready to announce them yet."
Existing trade and investment office openings
2006 - Palo Alto, California; European Union (four offices later consolidated into two in London, United Kingdom and Hamburg, Germany)
2007 - Shanghai, China; Tokyo, Japan
2008 - Seoul, South Korean
2009 - Beijing and Guangzhou, China; Bangalore, India (opening this summer)