Developing Strategies for the city of Hamilton
by www.canadanewstar.com Chief Editor Mr. F. Jiang 2015.01.01
The City of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, is between the Toronto and Niagara Falls. The population is more than half a million, and the city is shifting its economic base from steel to education, medical service, and food industry. There are McMaster University (Top 100 in the world, Top 4 in the Canada), Hamilton School Board, Mohawk College ( Top1 in the GTHA) , Columbia International College (Top1 in Canada) and other schools which can provide high quality education. There are Hamilton Health Science service group which is the 2nd largest hospital group in Ontario can provide high quality health services. There are many tourist attractions in the city, including Dundurn Castle, Hamilton Art Gallery, Webster's Falls, Royal Botanical Gardens and golf courses. There are hundred water falls in and around the city. These will attract families and international students to reside in Hamilton.
1. Now, the City of Hamilton Government is concerning for the following:
(1) A huge debt.
(2) Youth unemployment is high.
(3) With an increasing aging population, social welfare and medical expenses will continue to increase.
(4) Every year federal investment in research and innovation, there are many innovations in the McMaster University, but rarely successful high-tech companies has been set up.
(5) Fall of historical companies, including stelco.
(6) Government dependent on traditional heavy investment in repairing roads, bridges and building new roads, in order to stimulate the economy. But it has added new debt. I do not know what year can repay?
2. My Strategies for the City of Hamilton
1 Existing industrial and food processing industries
(1) Strengthen environmental protection for steel manufacturing supervision, improve the environment.
(2) Strengthen the food processing industry and ancillary support services, optimize environmental regulation.
2 Fund new enterprises.
(1) Collect venture capital fund from federal, provincial, municipal as well as private sectors to invest in new enterprises, including the Innovation Parks, in particular, in the McMaster Innovation Park
(2) Continue to support promising enterprises
(3) The success of these enterprises will offer great returns in venture capital funds, which will help increase values of these enterprises and employment opportunities within Hamilton. Overall these will increase real estate values in the Hamilton.
3 Support education
(1) McMaster University
(2) Mohawk College
(3) The Hamilton School Board
(4) Columbia International College
4 Support health care and seniors’ services
Support the Hamilton Health Sciences Corporation and related service companies.
(1) Increased real estate attraction will help build more independent living accommodations for the elderly.
(2) Purchase unused schools to develop activity centers for residents in Hamilton.
5 Support sports, tourism, and public services and safety
(1) Support Hamilton sports club and teams; increase the attraction for tournaments and official games to be held here
(2) Reorganize the tourist sites; develop one-to-two-day tourism programs
(3) Support private antique exhibits and art museums
(4) Support public safety
6 Initiating a joint investment as a pilot
I would suggest initiating a joint investment from the federal, provincial and municipal Hamilton government toward the Hamilton City Development Zone as a pilot, and in addition, offer $30 million annually as venture capital for three consecutive years, then wait to see results. Investments should gear toward the characteristics of Hamilton with emphasis on innovation and new technological enterprises.
I would suggest for the government to divert a portion of the funds invested in the economic recession toward the following:
（1）Innovative technologies of new businesses (with innovative advantages of McMaster University, such as new materials, telecommunications, automotive, pharmaceuticals and vaccines, and environmental protection and other fields.)
（2）Food processing businesses (in cooperation with surrounding farms and a majority of Ontario's prominent food processing enterprises)
（3）Elderly services (with the advantage of the Hamilton health sciences group, the establishment of the elderly living area, ancillary services, entertainment, attracting families to settle retirement.)
（5）To encourage and support the establishment of a private art - museums, support for antiques, art, auction enterprises (focusing on the United States, Britain, Canada, China and India). This will help attract a larger number of tourists and collectors to the city, which will help promote the development of the catering and hotel industry. Near 14 mil tourists visited Toronto in 201 and 12 million tourists visited Niagara falls each year. That means at least 10 mil tourists by pass Hamilton each year.
A sustained venture capita investment of $30 million annually for three years can help reduce the risk of venture capital.
If $500,000 is invested into each new company, VC fund will have 10% stake in the new company, two technical services staff need be hired. Coupled with the entrepreneur himself this equates to three staff persons. Up to 180 new businesses can be supported in these 3 years, creating at least 540 direct jobs. Based on the estimation of a 10% success rate to the venture capital investments, there will be 18 successful businesses locally that would act as new pillars of enterprise that can draw long-term economic benefits. Each level of government can then withdraw from the successful IPO of companies to help repay their debts and fund new companies.
In comparison, how many direct and indirect jobs can be created through investing $90 million in roads and bridges alone? How many years would it take to repay the debt and the accumulated interest?
In my view, if government has huge debt, during the economic slowdown or recession, government should put money on the area which can create more jobs and have high return in the future. Otherwise, they will build up the dept and face bankruptcy.
If the pilot succeed, then it can across the country, so that all levels of government to cut the national debt, increasing employment, making Canada the best country in the world to live and work.
Together, we can make Hamilton a great city –the best for living, education, career and tourism in Canada, to be renowned across the world. We will reduce debt quickly and not face city bankruptcy.