The provincial government is encouraging residents to support local businesses with BC Buy Local Week.

The aim is to keep money circulating within the BC economy instead of out of province from online shopping.

There are currently more than 493,000 small business operating throughout the province.

Manager, Smithers District Chamber of Commerce, Heather Gallagher said it is even more important in small towns to support local economies.

“local businesses are so generous with supporting the community; school groups, organizations, clubs, countless times there are fundraising activities local merchants contribute too, I mean Amazon does not contribute to local economies,” said Gallagher.

According to the Ministry of Jobs, Trade, and Technology, employment in B.C.’s small business sector climbed 7.6 per cent between 2012 to 2017 which is well over the national average.

It’s the local businesses in Smithers that Gallagher said attracts people to the town.

“We attract a lot fo regional travellers because they have such a great shopping experience when they come to Smithers,” said Gallagher.