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Canada Well Positioned to Face Global Economic Challenges, Flaherty Tells Finance Committee

OTTAWA, Ontario, August 19, 2011 — The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, today told the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance that Canada is well positioned to face global economic challenges despite renewed uncertainty generated by concerns about the U.S. economic and fiscal situation and the continuing debt problems in Europe.

“Canada is the only G-7 country to have regained all the output and jobs lost in the global recession. Canada’s net debt burden is markedly lower than that in most other major industrialized countries, and our fiscal fundamentals are sound and sustainable over the long term,” Minister Flaherty said.

“We have a low-tax plan for jobs and growth and the resolve to stay the course. The Next Phase of Canada’s Economic Action Plan will preserve this country’s advantage in the global economy; strengthen the financial security of Canadian workers, seniors and families; and provide the stability necessary to secure our recovery in an uncertain world.”

Acknowledging the volatile economic environment around the world, the Minister told committee members that the global recovery from the financial crisis—especially in the United States and Europe—is fragile and that growth expectations should remain modest. 

Looking to the future, Minister Flaherty noted, “In a very uncertain global economic situation, one of the best strategic contributions that the Government can make to bolster confidence and growth in Canada is to maintain our strong fiscal position.”

The Government will maintain its plan to return to balance a year early, by 2014–15, through its deficit reduction action plan, which will achieve $4 billion in annual savings once it is fully implemented three years from now.

Minister Flaherty said he will continue to monitor developments closely and provide an update of the economic and fiscal outlook for this year and beyond in the Update of Economic and Fiscal Projections, to be released this fall.

News source: Department of Finance


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