Without question, the COVID pandemic has had a dramatic effect on our nation's economy. Local businesses have closed their doors for good, entire industries have shut down, and many Canadians are unsure what their future has in store. A plan is needed to bring certainty and confidence back to the lives of Canadians – built on a solid framework of economic development. Better leadership and policies offer the only path to recovery for Canada's economy.
Conservatives believe that hardworking Canadian employers and employees are the real sources of wealth creation and prosperity, not big government programs. We believe that government's job is to create an environment that promotes economic growth and investment and puts Canadians first. Governments should and can empower the free market, not create an environment where a federal handout is the only job available. It's Canadians that know how to better their own lives, and they are best suited to solve their own problems, not government.
Under the capable leadership of Erin O'Toole, our Conservative team is offering a distinct vision for the future of Canada and our path to economic recovery. With our vast natural resource capacity, expansive coastal access to three oceans, and our membership in the world's leading military and intelligence partnerships, we are in many ways the envy of the world. But until we offer competent leadership and a cohesive vision for the future of Canada, we will continue to squander that opportunity through poor Liberal decisions, ineffective regulation, and internal trade barriers that stunt the growth of Canadian enterprise.
An example of this squandered opportunity is the Liberal government's record on natural resource development. The fact is, that Canada's economic recovery cannot take place without the energy sector. Over the past five years no sector has suffered more under the Trudeau Liberals than the energy sector. It's imperative that Justin Trudeau stop attacking the Canadian energy sector and realize its crucial role in Canada's economic recovery.
As the new Shadow Minister for Economic Development and Internal Trade, I have already commenced a series of meetings with Canadian industry leaders to ask them how we can work together to create more opportunity and sustainable jobs within our own borders. Building on Erin O'Toole's new platform dedicated to promoting increased internal trade and self-sufficiency, I look forward to working alongside provincial, industry, and federal leaders on a Canada-first economic policy. It's time to prioritize Canadian jobs and bring back an economic climate of stability that will attract investment, not continue on the Liberal path of uncertainty, and continuously changing regulations.
With major and unpredictable market shifts occurring in global trade, a series of diplomatic crises between major trading nations like China and the United States, and global supply chains becoming more and more challenging to maintain, internal trade and economic development need to be a central part of our economic recovery strategy. We need a plan that unlocks the true economic potential of our workforce and exports it around the world and throughout Canada. It's what Canadians expect as we look to come out of the economic crisis and it’s what Conservatives will deliver on.
Warren Steinley is a Conservative MP for Regina-Lewvan.