Budget Addresses Key Economic Issues: Canadian Chamber of Commerce

    OTTAWA, Jan. 27 /CNW Telbec/ - The Canadian Chamber of Commerce today
welcomed Ottawa's plan to respond to the global recession.
    "Since the meltdown in global financial markets last fall, we have called
for a comprehensive strategy to limit the impact of the recession on Canada
and to speed recovery. While there are elements that we would have designed
differently, the government has consulted extensively and has answered our
request to show how it thinks we can get our economy moving again. In the
interests of all Canadians, the plan should be given a chance to work," said
Chamber President and CEO Perrin Beatty.
    In his Budget speech, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty responded positively
to a number of the Canadian Chamber's proposals to mitigate the impact of the
recession and stimulate the economy, including:

    - Accelerating infrastructure spending
    - Providing greater access to credit for businesses
    - Offering tax relief for low- and modest-income Canadians
    - Providing incentives for new business investment
    - Continuing the previously-announced corporate tax reductions
    - Strengthening labour adjustment programs and training for unemployed

    The Canadian Chamber welcomed the extensive budget consultations and
engagement of the Government, and how it took into account the suggestions
from the Chamber network across Canada. However, it noted that the
government's projections for recovery are more optimistic than most private
sector economic forecasts, and it will closely monitor progress to ensure that
deficit financing does not become permanent.
    "Both yesterday's Throne Speech and today's budget announcement
acknowledged that economic conditions have deteriorated rapidly and that the
government needs to respond urgently. While the next several months will be
rough for both families and businesses, and we will watch carefully to ensure
that Ottawa does not return to long-term structural deficits, the fact that we
now have a clear strategy should help to restore consumer and investor
confidence over the medium term. We believe it is an important step forward,"
said Mr. Beatty.

For further information:

For further information: Katie Anderson, Cell: (613) 797-1860; Go to
http://www.chamber.ca to view the Canadian Chamber's budget analysis.

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Canadian Chamber of Commerce

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