Infrastructure Plan, Ottawa: only half of the funds spent as planned

News 29 March, 2018
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    Christopher Nardi

    Thursday, 29 march 2018 11:12

    Thursday, 29 march 2018 11:12

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    OTTAWA | The federal government has managed to spend only half of the 14.4 G$ promised in the first phase of its famous infrastructure plan. This can have a significant negative impact on the economy, reveals a new report from the parliamentary budget officer.

    In total, only$ 7.2 billion left in the coffers of Ottawa to be invested in nearly 10,000 infrastructure projects in Canada from 2016 to 2018. The government announced, however, in 2016, he would be able to pay the majority of 14.4 G$ in the first two fiscal years, in order to “stimulate the economy in the short term.”

    The use of the rest of the total budget of phase 1 of the new plan in terms of infrastructure (NPI) of the liberals has therefore been postponed.

    The DPB does not surprise. He says in his report that you have advised the ministry of Finance, in 2016, that his plan does not seem realistic.

    “The DPB has been reported the risks related to the compliance deadlines stipulated by the government. Following a detailed analysis of all the projects launched by the federal departments and agencies, as well as a review of the expenditure plans of the provincial, the DPB has concluded that a significant amount of planned spending in 2016-2017 could be carried over to future years.”

    However, these delays are not without consequence, ” continues the DPB.

    “Any slowdown in federal spending provided for in the infrastructure will have an important impact on the budgetary balance, as well as on the strength of the canadian economy. Such delays can also give indications on the usefulness of this policy instrument that are expenditure in infrastructure, the fiscal stimulus in the short term,” said Mr. Fréchette in his report.

    Quebec, poor child

    Quebec is far out winner of the first phase of this major investment plan in infrastructure. Even if the province is third in terms of the number of projects funded (1289) in the last two years, the amount invested corresponds only to $ 97 per capita.

    This puts Québec at the tail end of the pack, while the front-to-last province in the ranking is Ontario, where the money invested is to 161 $ per capita.

    “The funding is not proportional to the number of projects; in fact, it has happened in some cases that a small number of projects with the highest value receive funding comparable to the funding received by provinces with a large number of projects,” says the DPB.