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Study tracks the role of IT in economic growth

Canadian businesses have invested heavily in information and communications technology (ICT) during the past two decades, far outpacing investment in most other types of assets, a Statistics Canada re...

Canadian businesses have invested heavily in information and communications technology (ICT) during the past two decades, far outpacing investment in most other types of assets, a Statistics Canada report indicates. And the investment in ICT was a major factor in accelerating growth in the business sector’s economic output in the last half of the 1990s, the report confirms.

Investment in ICT has been growing at an annual pace of 16.2% over the last 20 years, according to the report. (ICT includes computer hardware, computer software and telecommunications equipment.)

Despite this rapid growth, however, ICT equipment accounts for a small share of the business sector’s aggregate capital. In 2000, the sector’s ICT assets totalled $60 billion in current prices, representing only 6.4% of fixed reproducible capital, which includes other machinery, equipment and structures, but not land or inventories.

Still, this was more than five times the total of $11 billion in 1981, which marks the start of the Statistics Canada study when ICT accounted for an even smaller 3.9% share of the business sector’s fixed reproducible capital stock.

Business investment in ICT more than doubled from 1995 to 2000 compared with the 1988-to-1995 period, as firms replaced and upgraded their high tech equipment and software. Business investment in ICT grew an average 27.6% per year, five times faster than business sector output from 1995 to 2000. This helped GDP to post its highest growth since 1981.

GPSNet Technologies marries software to OmniTRACS system

GPSNet Technologies Inc. has married its host software called GPS411 with Cancom Tracking’s OmniTRACS mobile communications system.

Working with Cancom Tracking’s patented “Circle of Service”, GPSNet Technologies takes the information provided by drivers and unites it with their GPS411 message management module. This partnership creates a package that integrates information received via satellite into QTRACS Windows and then into the company’s host computer. In addition to drivers being able to update shipment status and receive load assignments through OmniTRACS, the system transmits vehicle-positioning information, automatically sends both routing and directions and automatically re-calculates the “ETA to the Next Stop” of every vehicle whenever the new vehicle position is received from OmniTRACS.

Most of the information currently entered by drivers and dispatchers will be captured, transferred via OmniTRACS, and then updated automatically into GPSNet Technologies’ customer database. Drivers can record 100% of dispatch events from ‘arrived at shipper’, ‘loaded’, through to ‘delivery of the load’.

This will save countless hours of mundane data entry, Cancom Tracking says.

New Web service helps with enhanced border security

MSR Inc., a developer of Customs automation solutions, recently launched the MSR Visual Tariff Web service (

The service is aimed at helping companies involved in importing or exporting cope with changes at the border, such as mandatory classification of goods, prior to requesting Customs release.

Visual Tariff includes searchable Customs tariffs and government rulings for the U.S. and Canada. Updates are direct from government sources, so the information is reliably current, the company says.

As of May, 2002 Canada Customs is requiring the correct 10-digit Harmonized System code in order to release commercial shipments valued at $1,600 or more. According to Customs, release of goods will be delayed until the 10-digit HS code is provided. Under the new Customs administrative monetary penalty system, if it is determined that an incorrect 10-digit HS code was provided, penalties in the range of $100 to $1000, or 5% to 20% of the value of the goods, may be levied.

In addition to Customs tariff schedules, Visual Tariff houses other important trade content and help – from explanatory notes to customs laws, regulations, trade actions, rules of origin for preferential tariff treatments like NAFTA, GPT, LDC, and training materials that explain how to classify.

For more information, visit MSR at

DMTI Spatial announces release of CanMap V6.1

Markham, Ont.’s, DMTI Spatial announces the release of CanMap Streetfiles and CanMap RouteLogistics V6.1.

CanMap Streetfiles V6.1 provides topographic and geographic features for 157 major Canadian urban areas, addressed street segment coverage for 87% of the population and named street segment coverage for 99% of the population.

Building on this product foundation, CanMap RouteLogistics V6.1 goes further to deliver detailed route mapping data for use within automated vehicle location, wireless and Web location based services, in-car navigation, fleet management and route optimization applications.

New additions include airports, airfields, heliports and waterdromes points of interest, and free ArcView 3.2 compatible scripts that allow users to make use of turn restrictions

CanMap Streetfiles V6.1 Sample Data can be accessed by going to: www.

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Truck News is Canada's leading trucking newspaper - news and information for trucking companies, owner/operators, truck drivers and logistics professionals working in the Canadian trucking industry.
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