Vancouver Board of Trade gives Economic Action Plan 2013 a ‘B+’ grade
March 21, 2013
VANCOUVER, B.C. — The Vancouver Board of Trade, representing thousands of business members in British Columbia, has assigned an overall grade of “B+” to Economic Action Plan 2013, based on the federal government’s promise to return to a balanced budget in 2015-2016, its commitment to spending control and debt management, and its focus on Canada’s long-term prosperity.
“The Government is demonstrating a commitment to returning to a balanced budget in the short term, but at the same time, supporting economic growth and job creation,” said Lori Mathison, Chair of the Government Budget and Finance Committee of The Vancouver Board of Trade.
“Given the state of the global economy – where we are seeing recessions, drops in national and sub-national credit ratings, and out-of-control deficits – we are truly fortunate in Canada to be contemplating balanced budgets, receiving AAA credit ratings, and growing our GDP.”
The Vancouver Board of Trade graded Economic Action Plan 2013 on four criteria and assessed whether the budget met The Board of Trade’s recommendations, which were previously submitted to Finance Minister Jim Flaherty in a detailed letter.
REPORT CARD RESULTS
Spending Control: A-
The federal government is demonstrating sound control and restraint on program spending, a key contributing factor to achieving a balanced budget by 2015-2016.
Tax Competitiveness: B-
The Vancouver Board of Trade was pleased that there were no new tax rate increases. That said, our organization is concerned about the potential impact of the dividend tax credit amendments on the effective tax rate of non-eligible dividends. In addition, there will be a negative effect on the way expenses will be treated for mines in the pre-production phase. This could impact the number of new mines in B.C. and Canada.
Debt Management: A
Considering economic uncertainty around the globe, it is impressive that the government is targeting a balanced budget by 2015-2016.
Long-Term Vision: B+
There is a strong focus on balancing the budget and investing in world-class research and innovation programs, however, important issues such as energy and health care were not prominent. That said, The Vancouver Board of Trade is encouraged by the emphasis on skills training and infrastructure spending in the budget.
Lori Mathison, Chair of The Vancouver Board of Trade’s Government Budget and Finance Committee, is available for further comment on Economic Action Plan 2013. For more information, contact Greg Hoekstra, Communications Officer, at 604-640-5450 or email email@example.com.
Budget and Finance