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CCC’s Annual Public Meeting is 100% virtual. It features video presentations from Chairperson, Doug Harrison, and President and CEO, Bobby Kwon. Watch as they look back at how CCC promoted Canadian export during the 2021-2022 fiscal year.

As always, CCC welcomes your questions. Please submit them by email to [email protected].

Transcript

Hello and welcome to the Canadian Commercial Corporation’s Annual Public Meeting. Thank you for joining us.

I’m Douglas Harrison, Chair of CCC’s Board of Directors, and I’m happy to be here today along with Bobby Kwon, President and CEO of CCC, to review the organization’s results for the 2021-2022 fiscal year.

Again this year, we are presenting our meeting online so that we can reach the greatest number of Canadians. Should you have any questions pertaining to the information shared in this video, please direct them to [email protected] and it will be our pleasure to provide you an answer via email.

Before going any further, I’d like to acknowledge that Bobby and I are in Toronto today, and that the land on which we are gathered is the traditional territory of the Haudenosaunee (Ho-den-o-saw-nee), and most recently, the territory of the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation. We pay our respect to the Indigenous Peoples, their ancestors, and their contributions to this great country.

[CCC’s purpose, mission, and business lines]

For those of you less familiar with our work – CCC is Canada’s government-to-government contracting agency.

As a federal Crown corporation, CCC plays an integral part in the development of international trade between Canada and other nations.

For over 75 years, CCC has been helping Canadian companies sell goods and services to governments around the world, while supporting the Government of Canada’s international trade objectives and foreign policy agendas.

CCC delivers on these goals through three important services.

First, as the International Prime Contractor, CCC signs government-to-government contracts with foreign government buyers to help Canadians win more international contracting opportunities across various industry sectors.  

Second, as the custodian of the Canada-US Defence Production Sharing Agreement, the DPSA, CCC enables Canadian exporters to compete on equal terms for contracts as part of the U.S. Department of Defense domestic supply base.  In fact, in recognition of the strategic and enduring economic importance of DPSA, the 2021 Federal Budget included an annual appropriation for CCC to administer Canada’s DPSA commitments.

And finally, our Sourcing Service. CCC provides procurement support that enables departments and agencies of the Canadian Government to deliver in-kind aid to foreign governments, including for urgent and emergency disaster relief.

[Current operating context]

In 2021-22, as global trade dynamics continued to change considerably, CCC remained resilient.

  • The COVID-19 pandemic continued to have lingering effects on the economy and all aspects of our lives;
  • The global geopolitical environment became more unstable;
  • Canadian businesses faced rising inflation, significant labour shortages, as well as other challenges.

[The CCC value]

Despite these challenges, I’m proud to report that CCC carried on delivering strong results for Canadians and for Canadian exporters, while supporting the Government of Canada’s trade priorities.

Our government-to-government – or G2G – contracting approach continues to be an effective trade enabler.

Under this model, CCC signs a commercial contract with a foreign government buyer, subcontracts the work to a Canadian business, and offers a Government of Canada assurance of contract performance to the buyer.

By mitigating the foreign buyer’s risks in this manner, CCC’s G2G contracting approach creates an additional incentive for governments around the world to buy Canadian.

G2G contracts also help advance bilateral commercial relationships between Canada and other governments.

Importantly, CCC’s involvement facilitates the participation of Canadian exporters in markets and transactions that might otherwise be beyond their reach.

[Strategy clarity and business performance highlights]

The Board of Directors was pleased to see CCC delivering value throughout 2021-22 in alignment with the priorities and direction of the Government of Canada.

During last fiscal year, CCC supported 422 small, medium, and large Canadian businesses – 22% more than the previous year.

With the help of CCC, these companies exported $2.5 billion in goods and services to the U.S.A., and around the world.

These exports helped create and sustain more than 14,500 Canadian jobs across a variety of sectors.

Bobby will give you more details on CCC’s successful year in a few minutes and will also present the results by program.

One aspect that I want to highlight is CCC’s excellent work on critical urgent response through its Sourcing service.

Working closely with Canadian industry, the Department of National Defence and Global Affairs Canada, CCC played an important role in helping deliver on Canada’s international commitments to support the people of Ukraine in the wake of the Russian invasion in February 2022.

This support of government policy was very much in line with our COVID response, where CCC helped deliver personal protective equipment and other critical supplies to governments abroad.

Notable here as well is that, throughout 2021-2022, CCC continued to uphold and promote the highest standards of environmental, social and governance practices ­– or ESG.

CCC remains committed to protecting the environment, conducting business with integrity, and promoting human rights. This includes supporting the commitments Canada has made to contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

To that end, the Board of Directors oversees CCC’s continued efforts to meaningfully integrate ESG principles into its operations. A newly formed Board-Management Committee will help guide the corporation’s ESG strategy and maximize it impacts.

As we look to the future, CCC’s corporate strategy is clear and remains focused on financially sustainable growth. CCC aims to sign more G2G contracts with foreign governments around the world, while continuing to diversify the breath of sectors and Canadian companies we serve.

By aligning commercial pursuits with Government of Canada economic priorities and trade objectives, we strengthen bilateral relationships, diversify trade, and enhance the competitive advantage of Canadian companies of all sizes.

[Closing remarks]

In closing, I would like to personally thank Minister Mary Ng for her continued support for the important work of CCC and her trust in our vision.

I would also like to thank my Board colleagues for their dedication and stewardship.

Congratulations and thank you to CCC’s management team as well as to all employees for their contributions to Delivering Canada to the world, and to creating jobs and economic prosperity here at home.

We are confident in CCC’s future. The organization remains well-positioned to bring Canadian skills and experience to bear in foreign markets, strengthen bilateral relations with governments around the world, and help execute on the Government of Canada’s trade agenda.

It is now my pleasure to turn it over to CCC’s President and CEO, Bobby Kwon, who will deliver his report on CCC’s financial performance.

Thank you, Doug. 

Bonjour à tous, and a warm welcome to everyone viewing. 

It has been my privilege to serve as President and CEO of CCC for over a year and a half now. 

I would like to thank you, Doug, and the Board of Directors, for your support and leadership throughout this time.

At CCC, we help Canadian businesses compete in increasingly complex and competitive government procurement markets, where government contracts are often at the crossroads of commerce and international relations. 

Our mandate is clear: develop trade between Canada and other nations. We’ve been executing and delivering on it for more than 75 years. 

As Doug mentioned, 2021-22 continued to be marked by prolonged pandemic uncertainty, increasingly competitive markets, and volatile global trade dynamics. 

This environment created new challenges, and also unique opportunities for CCC’s work. 

Throughout the year, we continued to take decisive steps to fulfill the key objectives of our Corporate Plan, including growing and diversifying our customer base, whilst also advancing inclusive international trade for Canadian businesses of all sizes and ownership profiles. 
We had a strong, successful fiscal year. I’m proud to report that for the year ended March 31, 2022:

* We were active in 64 countries. 

* We served 422 Canadian companies last year, a 22% increase compared to prior year. This affirms the continued value of our services and reflects the broader use of CCC advisory services by Canadian businesses. 

* Through CCC, Canadian businesses exported $2.5 billion in goods and services to governments around the world, creating an estimated 14,500 Canadian jobs.

* We signed new export contracts totalling $1.4 billion. This included $868 million with the U.S. Department of Defense and $466 million with governments of other countries, with projects in agriculture, infrastructure, ICT and defence.

* CCC is proud to have been a partner in Canada’s support of Ukraine, by helping Global Affairs Canada and the Department of National Defence to source $59 million in military aid for the Ukrainian government. It is worth mentioning that this effort supported 600 Canadian jobs. Also notable here is that, between April and September 2022, CCC facilitated almost $300 million dollars in additional military aid for Ukraine. Our 2022-23 Annual Report will include more details on our tremendous support for the Government’s Ukraine aid effort.  

* In the words of the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business & Economic Development: “CCC has a unique capacity to quickly and efficiently deliver Canadian international aid, in rapidly changing environments.” 

Through the work and dedication of CCC’s employees, and a clear strategic corporate vision, we surpassed our targets on our key performance indicators – a testament to the value we create for exporters and the Government of Canada.

We continued our efforts to grow and diversify our customer base, increasing the percentage of small and medium sized enterprises in the total number of companies we serve.

SMEs are companies with less than 500 employees, and they represent 99.8% of Canada’s companies. They also employ almost 90% of the private sector workforce.

Selling internationally helps companies scale and creates a multiplying success factor at home, by creating jobs and wealth. 

Last year, 77% of all the companies we served were SMEs, compared to 64% in the previous fiscal. 

We were also pleased to see good pick-up of our free knowledge products and advisory services, confirming that Canadian businesses see value in our new offerings and that there is room for CCC to grow and serve more customers.

Our Global Bid Opportunity Finder – or GBOOF is a free web application, developed by CCC exclusively for Canadian companies – enabled close to 1,800 businesses to search over 1 million government procurement opportunities from 200 jurisdictions around the world. 

Approximately 95% of the total users of the Global Bid Opportunity Finder are SMEs – which is great news. 
 
We also received 849 responses to a diversity questionnaire of registered users, indicating that almost half of GBOF users self-identified as working for companies owned and or led by a broad cross section of underrepresented groups.

Always with an enhanced focus on customer-centricity, last year we made business process improvements and investments in cyber security, digitization, and information management. All of this was designed to make it simpler and easier for Canadian companies to work with CCC. 

Looking ahead, we will continue to strengthen our customer relationship management, with a view to serving a growing number of Canadian businesses of all sizes in the coming years. We will do this by ensuring that we continue to meet the evolving needs of Canada’s exporters who are competing responsibly in some of the world’s most challenging markets. 

This includes working closely with Canadian companies and other stakeholders to maximize the benefits of our U.S. DoD Prime Contractor service under DPSA or the Defence Production Sharing Agreement.

Like many organizations, COVID-19 continued to impact our operations, and CCC continued to support the health and well-being of all our employees.

Since October 2021, CCC has been operating with a hybrid work force, where employees had the option to work from the office or from home. We developed guidance for employees and managers to support them through this transition. CCC plans to maintain a hybrid work model into the future whilst continuing to foster a high-performance culture.

During last fiscal, we also advanced our work internally to promote equity and diversity and make CCC a great place to work – for everyone. 

For example, we concluded an agreement with EQuest, a reputable organization that promotes job posting to a variety of Indigenous, Disability, and Visible Minority community job boards. The objective of this partnership is to attract more applicants from these communities into our recruiting pools. 

Through Women in Governance, CCC underwent a gender parity assessment and achieved a bronze level Parity Certification. 

We will continue implementing the recommended best practices identified through this assessment with a view to improving our certification level in the future.

Finally, 2021–22 was a year of significant leadership change, during which the entire membership of our senior management team was refreshed following an open, transparent, and merit-based selection processes that attracted high quality candidates from industry as well as from internal promotions. 

As a relatively new leadership team, we are now hitting our stride, and I look forward to supporting and strengthening the leadership team’s contribution to Canada’s international trade success.

Halfway through 2022-23, we are accelerating our growth and operational excellence efforts to help build the CCC of the future – one that is results-driven, customer-centric, and financially sustainable. We know CCC will succeed when we help more Canadian companies access, bid on, and win more contracts around the world

In closing, I would like to thank the Board of Directors for their continued support and guidance. 

I am also grateful to our management team and employees for their commitment to CCC’s mission to help Canadian businesses to build successful commercial relationships with governments around the world.

The resilience and determination of CCC’s employees was critical in helping Canadian exporters successfully navigate this complex and rapidly changing environment.

Global trade remains challenging and connecting Canadian companies to global opportunities is more important now than ever. 

As we look forward, I’m optimistic about CCC’s ability to serve the evolving needs of Canadian companies even more effectively and to support the Government of Canada’s economic recovery efforts and trade priorities. 

We’re here to help Canadian companies win contracts with governments around the world, and by doing so we contribute to creating jobs in Canada and growing our economy. 

Thank you for your time.