by Alia Abbas
The world is facing unprecedented times with the fight against the global pandemic of COVID-19. With global pandemics -- as with natural disasters -- it is a challenge to determine when and where they may occur. This is why, in preparation for all disasters, it is crucial that economic development organizations (EDOs) be ready to act upon their economic recovery plans.
The attached paper, A Manual for Developing an Economic Recovery Plan & Task Force for Investment Attraction: Rural EDOs (R-EDO) Edition, addresses how rural EDOs can prepare for an economic recovery plan and assemble a team during and after a major disaster. This research is unique because it documents the early stages of developing an economic recovery team for investment attraction and how to cope with a global pandemic. This paper serves as a step-by-step guide to be used by EDOs in their communities for establishing an in-house economic recovery team. It provides information on how to implement and/or restructure an EDO and team during a disaster. As a result, EDOs can better strategize an economic recovery plan and team in order to maximize return on investment attraction.
This manual was developed with the aim of helping EDOs in their post-COVID 19 economic recovery planning phase. It provides EDOs with concrete and practical guidance on what information should be included in their economic recovery plan and to assist them in forming an economic recovery task force (Sections 1 and 2). Lastly it briefly discusses how to establish an investment attraction (Foreign Direct Investment – FDI) and supply-chain management system (Section 3). The manual comprises of the following three sections:
Section one provides an understanding on the difference between a ‘Disaster and Emergency Management Plan’ versus an ‘Economic Recovery Plan’. It further examines the definition of an emergency and the five phases of a disaster and emergency management plan. It addressed the gap in an emergency management plan and why it is crucial for an economic development organization to develop an economic recovery plan for its community. It then provides an understanding on how an economic recovery plan can lead to investment attraction in a community during and after a disaster.
Section two provides an understanding on the development of an economic recovery task force team. It further details the type of departmental collaborations needed by an EDO to further assist the community in its economic recovery.
Section three addresses why an EDO should consider including an investment attraction and supply-chain management section in their economic recovery plan. The purpose of designing an EDO recovery plan to include an investment attraction and supply-chain management section is to evaluate businesses.
All three sections of this manual will assist EDOs in formulating a team and provide a broader understanding on the types of resources and tools required to create an economic recovery plan. This manual can be used as a template to be applied by any given EDO interested in developing an economic recovery task force team.
Also included is a separate appendix which consists of business retention and expansion surveys provided courtesy of the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. The surveys are current as of November 2020.
Alia Abbas, Alia Consulting