Child benefit program pays dividends but presents hurdles

Governments need to be careful that benefits don’t discourage social institutions that strengthen families and communities

Child benefit program pays dividends but presents hurdlesParents will receive an increase in the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) this month. The program has been widely credited with reducing child poverty, yet the benefit is not without challenges. The cost-of-living adjustment boosts the maximum compensation for a child under age six to $6,639 annually and maximum compensation for children between the ages of…

National food policy can play key economic and social roles

But a great deal of work must be done to turn the vision into a reality that serves all Canadians

National food policy can play key economic and social rolesFor the first time, we have a national food policy. That’s good news. The vision is that all people in Canada have access to sufficient safe, nutritious and culturally diverse food. And that Canada’s food system is resilient and innovative, sustains our environment and supports our economy. It’s easy to support such a vision and…

Green Party turns to political ‘prince of darkness’

Warren Kinsella could end up being the Green Party’s most important political acquisition

Green Party turns to political ‘prince of darkness’When the Globe and Mail’s Robert Fife tweeted last week that longtime Liberal strategist Warren Kinsella would advise Elizabeth May and the federal Green Party in the fall election, it surprised some Canadians. Kinsella’s disappointment with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau isn’t a big secret. He’s not been impressed with his leadership, policy positions and public…

Dramatic drop in capital expenditures threatens Canada’s prosperity

Capital investment, particularly in machinery and equipment and intellectual property assets, is the major source of productivity growth and higher standards of living in developed countries.

Dramatic drop in capital expenditures threatens Canada’s prosperityThe federal government’s recent approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is a welcome sign. It shows that the Liberal government recognizes Canada’s deteriorating investment environment, particularly in the upstream oil and gas sector (essentially, exploration and production). Unfortunately, the government has provided less evidence that it acknowledges the competitiveness problem plaguing a much broader…

How Canada can tax carbon efficiently

Carbon tax should replace other, less efficient policies with the same objective and be offset by cuts in other taxes

How Canada can tax carbon efficientlyEconomists generally agree that imposing a price on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is the most efficient way to reduce them while minimizing the drawbacks associated with intervention. The devil, however, is in the details. And when you look at the details, the carbon pricing systems the federal and provincial governments of Canada have put in…

Impressive job growth hides an ugly truth

Trend helps explain the disappointing pace of income and GDP growth in Canada, says report

Impressive job growth hides an ugly truthThe disconnect between the Canadian jobs market and the economy in general and income growth in particular, is defining the current cycle, says a report released on Thursday by CIBC. Lower Job Quality Curbing Income Growth, by bank economist Benjamin Tal, said the labour market continues to create jobs at an impressive pace, with the…

Canadian business investment still sluggish: Fraser Institute

Drop in business investment from 2014 to 2017 is the most severe in at least 30 years

Canadian business investment still sluggish: Fraser InstituteA study released on Wednesday by the Fraser Institute says business investment has declined in two-thirds of the non-government sectors that comprise the Canadian economy in recent years. The Private Sector Capital Expenditures in Canada: An Industry-Level Analysis report said the drop in business investment from 2014 to 2017 is the most severe in at…

China clearly has Canada’s number when it comes to food safety

China has played Canada in impressive fashion over the last six months and the meat ban is a masterful stroke

China clearly has Canada’s number when it comes to food safetyCanada is losing the food safety optics game against China. While Canada has demonstrated many times that its food safety record is outstanding – in fact, one of the best in the world – none of it matters now. Since Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei, was arrested in Vancouver in December 2018 on…

Bill C-69 is a loose, vague obstacle to development

The law is so full of giant holes that it could make things much worse for anyone planning a large project to improve our economy

Bill C-69 is a loose, vague obstacle to developmentCanada is no longer a low-risk, high-return venue for investment. The federal government has boxed itself into a corner in its attempts to square the process for reviewing and approving large mining, pipeline or other projects. It has run counter to the private sector’s desire for any such process to be clear, simple, relatively quick,…

Did Canada just dodge a war with the Philippines?

The garbage at the centre of an international dispute was to arrive in Vancouver on the weekend

Did Canada just dodge a war with the Philippines?Canadians have fought a lot of tough characters over the years. Sudanese warriors of the Mahdi, Boer guerrillas, armies of the German, Austrian and Japanese empires, Nazi SS, Red Chinese, North Koreans, Serbs, Croats and Taliban all came to rue the day they messed with the boys under the Maple Leaf banner. Heck, our navy…
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