For Immediate Release
February 22, 2022
VANCOUVER, B.C. —In response to the release of the 2022 Budget, Bridgitte Anderson, President and CEO of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade, made the following statement:
“B.C. has weathered the pandemic relatively well given its strong fiscal position, a return of economic activity and pre-pandemic employment levels. However, given years of cumulative tax increases, the cost of doing business in B.C. is high. Budget 2022 has limited incentives to drive economic growth and competitiveness,” said Bridgitte Anderson, President and CEO of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade.
The budget has nearly closed the gap on the forecast deficit, now projecting a deficit of $483 million, significantly less than the $9.7 billion projected in Budget 2021. Today’s budget provides additional funding for pandemic recovery, healthcare and mental health, childcare, and investments to address climate change and related disasters, such as the floods and fires last year.
“Spending is up significantly over the next three years and nearly $5 billion is set aside in contingency funds. Last week, the B.C. Government unveiled its economic plan, StrongerBC. Today’s budget lacks financial details to support many of the announced initiatives and does not address needed tax and regulatory reform, especially for our small and medium businesses,” added Anderson.
Highlights of Budget 2022
- $6.6B increase in spending over 3 years
- $4.8B in contingency funds
- $483M forecast deficit for 2021-22, less than $1.7B forecast in November 2021
- $2B in pandemic recovery
- $1B new funding for Clean BC
- $2.1B to address climate-related disasters
- $3.2B in funding for healthcare, mental health
- $195M in Life Sciences research
- $25M in tourism funding
- $12M over three years for new Declaration Act Secretariat to address Reconciliation
- $284M over three years for childcare services
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, access was restricted for the 2022 budget lockup. As a result, we were unable to issue our usual budget report card. We will be providing a deeper analysis of the budget in the coming days.
About the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade:
Since its inception in 1887, the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade has been recognized as Pacific Canada’s leading business association, engaging members to impact public policy at all levels of government and to succeed and prosper in the global economy. With a Membership whose employees comprise one-third of B.C.’s workforce, we are the largest business association between Victoria and Toronto. We leverage this collective strength, facilitating networking opportunities, and providing professional development through four unique Signature Programs. In addition, we operate one of the largest events programs in the country, providing a platform for national and international thought leaders to enlighten B.C.’s business leaders.