National Newswatch

Trade minister dodges questions on whether Canada has curbed suspected forced-labour imports from China

Apr 26 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Canada’s international trade minister on Monday would not provide details about whether the federal government has barred the flow of imported goods from China suspected of using forced labour, months after Ottawa introduced measures purportedly to stop the practice. In a committee testimony, Minister Mary Ng declined to answer questions from a Conservative MP about […]

Costs for consultants hired by government rise by $6 billion under Liberals

Apr 12 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Fees paid by the federal government to third-party consultants have ballooned since the Liberals took office in 2015, with expenditures for engineering, legal and other services rising $6 billion in six years. Costs for “professional and special services” increased to $16.4 billion in 2019-20, up from $9.5 billion when the Liberal government took office — […]

Mining executives warn Ottawa about dependence on China for strategic minerals amid deteriorating relations

Apr 5 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Mining executives and national security experts are warning the federal government about China’s domination of strategic mineral supplies, saying Ottawa needs to better protect supply chains for modern technology that relies on them like electric vehicles and smart phones. In testimony before the House of Commons natural resources committee this month, experts described China’s decades-long […]

Canada could be shut out of Biden’s $2-trillion infrastructure spending plans, Canadian negotiator warns

Mar 4 2021 — Jesse Snyder — The federal government’s chief trade negotiator is concerned that Canada could be shut out of U.S. President Joe Biden’s trillion-dollar infrastructure spending plans, the latest sign of continued anxieties over America’s protectionist trade policies. Congress last week approved Biden’s massive $1.9-trillion COVID-19 relief package, composed in part of infrastructure spending measures aimed at rebuilding U.S. […]

Liberals’ COVID-19 benefit programs continue to outpace wage losses, new StatsCan data show

Mar 1 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Canadians experienced “extraordinary changes in their economic well-being” during the pandemic as they gained thousands of dollars more from COVID-19 support payments than they lost in wages, according to new data from Statistics Canada. During one three month period last year, young and middle-aged households generally gained around $3,000 more through support measures, particularly the […]

Makers of next-generation fighter jets tout economic benefits as Ottawa readies COVID-19 stimulus plans

Feb 26 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Industry is urging the federal government to prioritize its $19-billion plans to buy a new fleet of stealth fighter jets, saying the massive procurement contract would provide crucial economic stimulus following a year of COVID-19 lockdowns. Their comments come after Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland last year announced plans to roll out up to $100 billion […]

Liberals accused of ‘toxic disdain for democracy’ as committee debates basis for proroguing Parliament during pandemic

Jan 28 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Opposition members on Thursday accused the Liberal government of blatant partisan manoeuvring when it prorogued Parliament last summer, in what one MP said showed a “toxic disdain for democracy” by the prime minister. Liberal, Conservative and NDP members of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs debated whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was justified […]

How a diminished Department of Finance brings into question Canada’s fiscal future

Dec 29 2020 — Jesse Snyder — The Trudeau government has been unacceptably opaque in its handling of the national purse, several former senior Finance officials say, a concern that reflects deeper disagreements in Ottawa between the public service and the Liberal government’s lofty spending plans. Their worries include what some officials describe as an increasingly centralized power base within the Prime […]

Canada’s ‘generous’ COVID-19 income supports vastly outpaced other developed nations: OECD

Nov 14 2020 — Jesse Snyder — Federal spending on financial supports during the height of the global pandemic in Canada greatly outpaced that of other developed countries, enough to actually raise household incomes at a time when the economy was in free fall. A new report by the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) shows that household incomes in Canada […]

NDP needs more ‘conscientious’ approach to avoid becoming permanent Liberal prop-up: experts

Oct 21 2020 — Jesse Snyder — Political strategists say the NDP under Jagmeet Singh risks falling into the role of permanent Liberal prop-up after the party on Wednesday again voted alongside the government to avoid triggering an election. Singh and 23 other NDP members voted against a Conservative motion on Wednesday that would form a committee to investigate the Liberal government’s […]

Ottawa nearing $300M deal with Ford Motors as part of planned electric vehicle shift: source

Oct 2 2020 — Jesse Snyder — The federal government is readying a nearly $300-million funding package for Ford Motor Company in an effort to help the firm transition towards electric vehicle production at its Oakville, Ont., plant, a source familiar with the matter says. The Ontario government is set to match the federal contribution under an arrangement worth almost $600 million, […]