Tomorrow’s federal budget must seize the opportunities outlined during last Friday’s visit by U.S. President Joe Biden. The joint vision for continental competitiveness and economic security articulated by President Biden and Prime Minister Trudeau is one business leaders on both sides of our shared border support.
Budget 2023 should include concrete actions to deliver on that vision in three key areas:
- On energy and environmental security, Budget 2023 must identify strategic, targeted investments in areas where Canada has comparable strengths. These investments should complement those being made in the U.S. through the Inflation Reduction Act and focus on those aspects of our integrated supply and value chains that will enhance our collective continental competitiveness. This does not require significant new spending in Budget 2023. Rather, funding for such projects can be found through consolidation of previously announced clean-technology programs
- On economic security, Budget 2023 must deliver on the government’s commitment to “partner with industry leaders to collaboratively find innovative ways to increase national resilience to cyber threats and improve the cybersecurity and resiliency of our critical infrastructure.” As the BCC urged in its pre-budget letter to the Finance Minister, Canada’s national security and intelligence agencies should be given the authority and mandate to share threat intelligence with private sector stakeholders at greatest risk to attacks.
- On the continued implementation and enforcement of the Canada-U.S.-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), Budget 2023 should address issues or irritants which could, if neglected, impact the successful extension of CUSMA when it is reviewed between now and 2026. Among other potential areas, this could include deferring the implementation of Canada’s unilateral and retroactive digital services tax to allow more time for the ongoing OECD discussions on a potential global tax framework to succeed.
November 1, 2023