Canada more ‘pro-business’ than US: 3M CEO


In an interview with the Financial Times, the CEO of 3M, George Buckley, called Barack Obama anti-business and “Robin Hood-esque” and complained about American policies on taxation, regulation, skilled immigration and science. He said Canada and Mexico are more pro-business than America:

“There is a sense among companies that this is a difficult place to do business. It is about regulation, taxation, seemingly anti-business policies in Washington, attitudes towards science.”

He added: “Politicians forget that business has choice. We’re not indentured servants and we will do business where it’s good and friendly. If it’s hostile, incrementally, things will slip away. We’ve got a real choice between manufacturing in Canada and Mexico – which tend to be pro-business – or America.”

The 3M chief also criticised US immigration policy, saying the difficulty of obtaining visas was forcing companies to move research and development overseas. “About 68 per cent of our science PhD candidates are from outside the US,” he said. “Many want to stay here afterwards but we’re not allowed as many visas as we would like.”

“We are now exporting science overseas to China, India, Germany, building labs there. There’s a good strategic reason for it, but we also have no choice – if we can’t get the people here and we’re competing with the people there, we have no choice but to do it locally.”


You can follow me on Twitter at luizachsavage

Filed under:

Canada more ‘pro-business’ than US: 3M CEO

  1. Obama did all that in just 2 years eh? LOL

    Seems to me US business has been complaining about this kind of thing for over a century.


    In 2009, George Buckley earned a total compensation of $13,992,628, which included a base salary of $1,720,000, a cash bonus of $3,859,112, stocks granted worth $4,333,655, options granted of $3,757,572, and other compensation of $322,289.

    • Can you point to one single instance where the CEO of a Fortune 500 company said Canada and Mexico were better business environments than the USA in the early 1900's? Just one?

      And I fail to see how George Buckley's personal income reflects on the tax and regulatory regime in the country. Perhaps you could enlighten me?

      • See, this is why you need an education.

        You've confused Fortune 500 companies with the early 1900s, and a Mexican revolution with the 21st century.

        As to Buckley, he's not exactly hard done by personally, and 3M is a global company so he has no room for complaint on either score.

        CEOs should stay out of politics, they always put their foot in it.

        • Of course 3M is a global company, that's his point: that 3M will move jobs out of America to the other countries where they do business.

          And he's not complaining about his personal finances, obviously. He's commenting on the business environment. There's a big difference there.

          • They already have. They just continue to whine.

            If he's so worried about 3M perhaps less salary and bonuses to him would help.

  2. I'm surprised he used Robinhood-esque as a pejorative term. After all, the other guy who didn't like Robin Hood was Prince John. While I can certainly understand a corporate behemoth identifying with a man known as treacherous, lustful, grasping of wealth, and paranoid, I didn't expect him to come out and declare it.

Sign in to comment.