April 17th, 2024

MP Report: Canada’s fiscal reality

By Medicine Hat News Opinon on January 3, 2020.

Optimism should be the key economic perspective for Canada as we enter a new decade. Unfortunately, the weight of enormous and growing federal debt, increased taxes and regulatory red tape are driving investment away. Combined with massive job layoffs, low incomes and the rising cost of living, the future economic outlook is less than rosy.

One would think the Liberals recent fall to a minority government would have provided the reality check necessary to refocus on what our country truly needs – urgent action to re-launch the economy. Sadly, this government’s irresponsible debt and deficit trajectory continues.

In mid-December, the finance minister’s fiscal update defended plans for the government’s ongoing deficits, even boasting of the country’s strong economy. Shamefully, his outlook is unrealistic as the update showed an increase of nearly $10 billion in spending since the spring budget, with the deficit expected to rise to $26.6 billion for the current year. That is up from $14 billion last year, and the $19.8 billion projected in the spring budget. Realistically, this fiscal position is a Canadian nightmare for today and tomorrow.

Our actual economic growth numbers are dismal. The United States outgrew Canada in three of the last four years and is projected to outgrow us by 50%in 2020. Even small, previously poor countries with few natural resources have higher per-person GDP than Canada, including Iceland at 60% and 70% in Ireland.

Canada’s employment picture is bleak, with unemployment rates above average every year since the Liberals took office in 2015. Mass layoffs have hit 2,500 Oshawa General Motors workers, 6,000 mill and forestry workers, 3,000 Bombardier workers and most of all more than 200,000 energy-related jobs. Our national unemployment rate is 6%, compared with 3.6% in the U.S. Three other G7 countries, Japan, Germany and the United Kingdom have significantly lower unemployment rates than does Canada.

The Liberals are setting the stage for a made-in-Canada recession. Never-ending deficits and out of control spending, not only threaten the livelihoods of future generations, but also severely weakening our ability to respond in times of crisis.

According to a report by leading accounting firm MNP, low incomes and the rising cost of living have left nearly half of Canadians fewer than $200 from insolvency. The crushing burden we all carry moving forward, is due to this government’s disregard for fiscal responsibility.

Canada’s Conservative opposition is calling for a three-point plan to kick start our economy, including cutting taxes for workers and entrepreneurs to reward investment and work; liberate our businesses to build, hire and grow, by eliminating red tape; and reassuring investors with a reasonable plan to phase out the deficit.

We will continue to be the voice of hardworking entrepreneurs and workers by demanding that the Liberals’ get our economy back on track so that Canadians can return to high paying, quality work. Our future depends upon it.

Glen Motz is Member of Parliament (CPC) for Medicine Hat-Cardston-Warner.

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