Premier Christy Clark

B.C.’S tech sector is thriving – and on Wednesday at Burnaby’s General Fusion Labs, Premier Christy Clark introduced the BC Liberal plan to keep creating jobs and opportunity in the Lower Mainland and across B.C.

“While other countries are looking inward, B.C. and our tech sector are building bridges to the world,” said Clark. “Today’s BC Liberals are the only party with a plan to seize this moment in history, and keep building a dynamic tech sector across our province.”

B.C.’s tech sector already includes over 10,200 companies and over 106,000 jobs, contributing more than $14.1 billion to B.C.’s annual economic output. The jobs it creates pay 75 per cent over the industrial average.

The Liberals say their party’s 2017 platform, Strong BC, Bright Future, includes an ambitious vision to keep growing BC’s tech sector, with four main goals:

* Keeping tech sector job growth above the provincial average, and reaching 120,000 by 2020.

* Increasing investment in the B.C. tech sector by up to an additional $100 million in the sector by 2020.

* Creating 1,000 new grads in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math disciplines, on top of the 1,000 coming.

* Increasing the number of tech companies with 10 or more employees by 20 per cent by 2021.

Some of the new ideas in Strong BC, Bright Future include:

* Teaching coding in Grades 6 through 9

* Ensuring BC tech businesses are first in line for government contracts

* $10 million for new life science research chairs

* Breathing new life into Robson Square as an innovation hub where students, teachers, startups, and tech giants collide and create great things.

“In a globally competitive industry, B.C.’s tech sector is thriving – and creating good-paying, family-supporting jobs,” said Clark. “Our tech strategy is focused on making sure companies have what they need to grow – access to talent, capital, markets, and data.”