18 Jan 2012

Grant Thornton International is releasing its report Global economy in 2012: a rocky road to recovery. The report details the global challenges that businesses faced in 2011 and discusses issues that had an impact on the business development of certain entities.

In addition to studying the influence of certain events such as the Arab Spring, the report explores certain 2012 trends related to investment, inflation, employment, women in the workplace, corporate social responsibility, renewable energy, etc.

The document can be found on Grant Thornton International’s website

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13 Jan 2012

Twenty years on from the signing of the Maastricht Treaty, which paved the way for the creation of the euro, research from the Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR) reveals that, despite the ongoing sovereign debt crisis, business leaders remain very supportive of the single currency.

The research reveals that almost four in five (78%) business leaders in the eurozone believe joining the euro has had a positive impact on their business. The main positive impacts cited are the boost to trade with other euro countries (23%), the elimination of exchange rate risk (15%) and greater transparency on prices (12%).

Business leaders were also asked about the drawbacks associated with joining the single currency – 57% cited a rise in costs and prices – but when asked if they would like to see the euro survive, an overwhelming 92% agreed. Businesses in Finland (90%) and Belgium (84%) are the most positive about the impact of the single currency, with those in Italy (48%) the least. The two regional economic heavyweights, Germany (79%) and France (71%), remain solidly supportive.

Ed Nusbaum, CEO of Grant Thornton International, said: “If a referendum on the future of the euro were held today amongst business leaders, then the result would be emphatically to keep it going. This represents economic realism on the part of businesses; Europe may have already gone back into recession but a break-up of the single currency could take the global economy down with it.

“Despite the sovereign debt crisis and the uncertainty this has caused, businesses remain supportive of the single currency. Politicians should take heed of the wishes of businesses as they search for resolutions that secure the future of the euro, and map out plans for future European integration.”

The future of the eurozone

The IBR reveals that business views on further European integration are more mixed. Less than one in three eurozone businesses said they would like to see the single currency expand (31%), although interestingly, those in the troubled economies of Greece (62%) and Spain (53%) are most keen to welcome new entrants.

Meanwhile, almost a quarter of eurozone businesses (24%) would like to see some countries drop out of the single currency. This is a popular option in the only remaining eurozone members with AAA-rated sovereign debt: Finland (50%), Germany (40%) and the Netherlands (24%).

Outside the eurozone the picture is also varied; the majority of business leaders in Poland (64%) and Denmark (62%) would like their country to join the single currency. But few of their peers in the UK (12%) and Sweden (28%) agree. Outside the EU, 88% of businesses in Turkey would like their economy to integrate further with Europe, but just 32% would like to join the euro.

Ed Nusbaum added: “The next few months could be the most significant in the history of the single currency, and arguably of the EU itself. The good news is that business support for keeping the euro intact remains robust.

“However, many substantial challenges lie ahead. Perhaps the most important is reducing government debt – which exceeds the 60% threshold for entrance into the single currency set out in the Maastricht Treaty 20 years ago in Belgium, France, Greece, Italy and Ireland – whilst ensuring that austerity does not strangle business growth prospects.”

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Notes to editors
The Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR) provides insight into the views and expectations of over 11,500 businesses per year across 40 economies. This unique survey draws upon 20 years of trend data for most European participants and nine years for many non-European economies. For more information, please visit: www.internationalbusinessreport.com.

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13 Jan 2012

MONTRÉAL, January 13, 2012 – Jean Robillard, President and CEO of Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton, is very proud to announce the appointment of Nathalie Normandeau to the position of Vice-President of Strategic Development at Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton. “The arrival of a personality as talented and influential as Nathalie Normandeau within our Firm is a tremendous boon for our team and especially for our clients who will be able to benefit from her rich expertise and knowledge of Quebec economic, financial and political issues to support them in their business projects,” he commented.

Ms. Normandeau’s responsibilities will include advising clients operating in various economic sectors. “Clients across Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton’s network and 90 offices will be able to benefit from my knowledge of government and Quebec regions, their specific issues and their economic and political challenges. I am delighted to join this influential Quebec firm, where I will be able to continue contributing to the success of businesses throughout Quebec,” stated Nathalie Normandeau, Vice-President of Strategic Development.

Contrary to what was reported by certain media outlets yesterday, Ms. Normandeau will have no specific assignment related to the Plan Nord. Moreover, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton is aware that Ms. Normandeau is subject to certain constraints under the Code of ethics and conduct of the Members of the National Assembly and the Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Act. Both Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton and Ms. Normandeau have every intention of complying with these requirements.
“Considering Ms. Normandeau’s leadership, her ability to mobilize people, her communication skills and her utmost professionalism, her contributions will clearly be an enormous advantage for our team and clients. On behalf of all of our Partner and employees, I would like to reiterate our appreciation that she has chosen Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton to help build Quebec businesses by contributing to the growth of our Quebec clients and entrepreneurs. I wish her all the best with her new duties,” concluded Jean Robillard.

Ms. Normandeau will begin her duties officially in May 2012 and, while she will be stationed out of the Montréal office, she is prepared to travel all over Quebec to serve our clients.

About Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton

Founded in 1948, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton is a leader in the fields of assurance, taxation, consulting and recovery and reorganization services. The Firm owes its success to over 2,000 employees, including more than 225 Partners in over 90 offices in Quebec, eastern Ontario and New Brunswick. The scope of its network makes it a leader in its business segment. For the past 30 years, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton has been a member of Grant Thornton International Ltd providing its clients with the expertise of member and correspondent firms in more than 100 countries.

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For more information:

Francis Letendre
Public Relations Consultant
Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton
T.: 514-390-4201
C.: 514-554-1685
[email protected]
www.rcgt.com

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19 Dec 2011

1. Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton carries out its verification and validation assignments for greenhouse gas emission reduction projects and verification assignments of greenhouse gas emission inventory projects according to the ISO-14064 standard and other recognized applicable standards. The latter require that the verifier or validator remain independent of the activity being verified or validated, avoid biases and conflicts of interest and remain objective throughout the validation or verification to guarantee that the results and conclusions will be based on tangible proof obtained through the validation or verification.

2. As a chartered professional accountants firm, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton has an assurance practice that complies with Canadian Audit Standards that apply to all assurance engagements, including greenhouse gas emission verification. All Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton Partners and employees must adhere to the independence standards that apply to their profession. To this end, the general provisions on independence of the code of ethics of chartered professional accountants of Québec require that the member carrying out or participating in an assurance engagement or an application of specified auditing procedures engagement be and remain free of any influence, interest and relationship that, in respect of such engagement, could affect his or her professional judgement or objectivity or that could be interpreted as such in the eyes of a reasonable observer.

3. In order to meet the greenhouse gas verification standards and the code of ethics of chartered professional accountants of Québec, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton’s Environment Group on Greenhouse Gases requires the following from Partners and employees:

a) Total compliance with the greenhouse gas verification standards regarding one’s independence from an entity’s activities on which we are issuing a verification or validation report as well as from an entity that produced a quantification report subject to our verification or validation report.

b)
Total compliance with the section on independence of the code of ethics of chartered professional accountants of Québec regarding an entity’s activities for which we are issuing a verification or validation report as well as an entity that produced a quantification report subject to our verification or validation report.

c)
Total compliance with Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton’s independence standards.

d)
Before the work begins, all engagement team members must declare their independence with respect to an entity for which we are issuing a verification or validation report as well as an entity that produced a quantification report subject to our verification or validation report.