Minister of Finance Welcomes IMF Report Confirming Canada’s Return to Balance in 2015

January 30, 2015 – Ottawa, Ontario – Department of Finance

Finance Minister Joe Oliver today welcomed the findings of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Staff Report for the 2014 Article IV consultation with Canada, which once again highlighted the Government’s successful low-tax plan to create jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.

The IMF gave a favourable review of the Canadian economic situation, noting that “above-potential GDP [gross domestic product] growth is envisaged for 2014 and 2015” in Canada, as exports and non-energy investments benefit from the U.S. recovery, but that oil prices would dampen near-term investment in the energy sector.

The IMF report confirmed that the Family Tax Cut and the increased and expanded Universal Child Care Benefit announced last fall would not materially delay a return to balanced budgets, noting that “the federal government is essentially on track to achieving its balanced budget target in fiscal year 2015/16.”

The report also noted that Canada’s “financial sector performance remains strong” and that Canadian banks are “resilient to credit, liquidity and contagion risks.”

Quick Facts

  • The Canadian economy has posted one of the strongest job creation records in the Group of Seven (G-7) over the recovery, with almost 1.2 million jobs created since July 2009.
  • The Government will balance the federal budget in 2015, and deliver close to $27 billion in tax relief and increased benefits for hard-working families with children over this year and the next five years.
  • The Government is supporting families through proposals to increase and expand the Universal Child Care Benefit, introduce the Family Tax Cut, and increase the Child Care Expense Deduction dollar limits.

Quote

“The IMF confirms that our Government’s Economic Action Plan is a proven formula for creating jobs, growth and long-term prosperity, through lower taxes and a return to balanced budgets in 2015. Given the fragile state of the global economy, this assessment underscores the wisdom of staying the course, balancing the budget and building on our progress.”

Joe Oliver, Minister of Finance

Additional Links

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Media Contacts

Nicholas Bergamini
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Finance
613-369-5696

Stéphanie Rubec
Media Relations
Department of Finance
613-369-4000

2013 Federal Budget: Funding For Aboriginal Programs

The Conservative federal budget has a lot in it, but of significance to our aboriginal people is funding for aboriginal programs, and the discussion of Bill S-2, the First Nations Matrimonial Real Property Rights Bill.

“The bill would finally provide the legal protections for the women on reserve that they have lacked for far too long. This discrimination should not exist. That is why aboriginal people and even the Manitoba NDP have been calling for the passage of Bill S-2. I would hope that the federal NDP would heed that call and allow a vote to take place, giving aboriginal women rights regarding matrimonial property,” said Government House Leader Peter Van Loan (York-Simcoe, Ont.). 

“The government also invested in several areas for aboriginal peoples in the 2013 budget, including:

  • $241-million over five years for the Income Assistance Program for First Nations;
  • $155-million over 10 years for infrastructure;
  • $54-million to settle specific claims;
  • $9-million over two years for the First Nations Land Management Regime;
  • $33-million over two years for the First Nations Policing program;
  • $11-million for an Aboriginal Justice Strategy;
  • $24-million over two years for the Family Violence Prevention Program;
  • $48-million over two years to address health care on reserves;
  • $4-million over two years to address mental health;
  •  $10-million over two years to provide scholarships and bursaries for First Nations;
  • $5-million over five years for Cape Breton University’s aboriginal business studies program, and
  • $100-million to improve housing in Nunavut.”

“The government also committed to “consulting with First Nations” on a First Nations Education Act.”  To read the entire article, go to the Hill Times Online.

Uranium Mining In Northern Quebec

Quebec is the hotbed in Canada for uranium activity, with more than 50 companies prospecting or exploring for the radioactive mineral.  A major poll has been taken in Quebec on Uranium mining, and the results are in!

The majority favors an independent study of the economic, environmental and social impacts of uranium development. But many, including occupants of the north where the mining takes place, are opposed.

For more information about this fascinating subject, visit the Montreal Gazette’s article:  Quebecers Divided On Uranium Mining:  Poll.

Devolution Could Take Effect April 2014

What is Devolution?

The transfer of public programs, program budgets and related legislation from the Government of Canada to Provincial/Territorial Government.  It has been happening since 1967 with Health Care, Social Services, Education, Highways, Forestry, and Airports.  Devolution is now about transferring the responsibility for managing public lands, resources and rights in respect of water in the NWT.

Meeting In Ottawa

A large delegation of representatives of the Northwest Territories, numbering roughly 55 people, including all members of the GNWT cabinet, most MLAs, aboriginal leaders, industry leaders and youth ambassadors, were in Ottawa to promote the territory and participate in talks with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other federal leaders.

To read more, view the Northern News Service article Devolution Deal Close:  McLeod.

Softening Oil and Potash Prices

“Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall says lower oil prices are having an effect on the province’s bottom line, but the situation here is not as bad as a provincial neighbour facing a $6-billion shortfall in resource revenues.”  Alberta is looking at a $6 billion deficit. To learn more check out the link below.

Source: Tuesday, February 05, 2013 in The StarPhoenix  Lower Oil Prices “Challenge” Government Books