Starting off the New Year in studio for the CBC News Network Weekend Business Panel, alongside John Northcott and Elmer Kim.
As our world continues to experience economic, political, and technological change, our discussion reflected just that:
- Turmoil in Venezuela. In the face of leadership uncertainty and devastating economic and social challenges, potential US sanctions could significantly impact Venezuela’s oil industry. What could this mean for Canada?
- Ontario enhances autonomous vehicle pilot program. Changes to an existing program will now allow some automated vehicles on public roads with just a passenger on board or a remote operator monitoring the vehicle. When could we expect to see these vehicles on the road?
The Venezuela story is a reminder that developments in far away countries can impact us here in Canada, including in terms of business and the economy. In the event that Venezuelan oil exports are sanctioned by the US, refineries in that country will be seeking supply to meet the needs of their operations. Canadian crude oil could fill this gap, however, meeting such opportunities successfully requires more than just identifying solutions at a high level. Logistical challenges and limitations have been in the news for some time and relate to the need for Canada to continue to focus on developing a global trade strategy for oil. This approach raises the likelihood that opportunities could be successfully met as they arise; it is also simply good business.
The advancement of riderless cars, one step closer to being approved for regular road use, reminds us that the future is now. Although there is still additional work to do in terms of testing and refinement, the practical use of autonomous vehicles represents tremendous change for many, including car manufacturers, insurers, companies that utilize vehicles and drivers, and consumers. Are they ready? I expect that many are facing the need to work quickly to keep up with the pace of these exciting developments.
And so, 2019 begins, with what should be an interesting year. Special thanks to CBC News Network for the on-air mention of my new book, Defusing the Family Business Time Bomb; I sincerely appreciate it!