The 11th annual State of the Island Economic Summit will take place Oct. 25-26 at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. FILE PHOTO/News Bulletin

Summit will look at Vancouver Island’s economic interests

The Vancouver Island Economic Summit happens Oct. 25-26

Vancouver Island’s economy takes centre stage in the upcoming Island summit.

People from communities across Vancouver Island will converge in Nanaimo next week for the 11th annual State of the Island Economic Summit, a two-day event Oct. 25-26 when leaders will learn, network and consider solutions to Island-wide issues.

There will be sessions on topics from poverty to the film industry and aboriginal business development, as well as guest-speakers, a trade show and the release of the third annual economic report.

B.C. Premier John Horgan will give an address at the event, on Wednesday, Oct. 25, giving people the chance to hear about the provincial government’s direction for the economy, and there will be a talk on earthquake risk management by expert Peter Yanev, who’s coming to Nanaimo after assessing damage from an earthquake in Mexico. Delegates will also hear from seven emerging tech companies, who’ll discuss their developing technology and seek investment.

Vancouver Island Economic Alliance president George Hanson said the summit, held at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre, is designed as a place leaders and decision-makers can come together and learn about opportunities and put their heads together to solve problems.

“At one level or another virtually everything that we’re presenting has either an opportunity that people should know about or a challenge or problem that needs further attention,” said Hanson, who points to three positions papers, set to be released at the event, as an example.

The alliance will look to further advocacy by collecting signatures of endorsement on position papers about issues such as poverty, value-added wood manufacturing and establishing Vancouver Island as a foreign trade zone point.

The summit saw 580 people attend last year.

Hanson said the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance is unique in B.C. and is the only non-government, non-profit organization that embraces an entire regional economy and all the sectors within it, and has the capacity to elevate the conversation beyond just one community.

For more information about the summit, including a schedule, visit http://viea.ca/.



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