Budget's positive initiatives overshadowed by spending splurge - Canadian Chamber of Commerce

    OTTAWA, March 19 /CNW Telbec/ - Today's federal budget unveiled some
fiscal measures that will enhance Canada's productivity and provide a welcome
boost to our competitiveness, particularly in the areas of the income tax
burden on low-income Canadians and improvements in the capital cost allowance
structure for the manufacturing sector, as well as investments in
post-secondary education and infrastructure. However, Canada's largest
business organization expressed concern over the fact that the government did
not deliver on its 'Advantage Canada' commitment as it failed to hold the line
on program spending, and in making a more meaningful reduction in the personal
tax burden of Canadians thus missing the opportunity to return more of their
hard earned dollars to Canadians.
    "While this budget delivers some good news, it also let a real
opportunity slip by", declared Nancy Hughes Anthony, President and CEO of the
Canadian Chamber of Commerce.
    "We are disappointed however that overall government spending continues
to significantly outpace the growth of the economy in the current fiscal year
and next year. Canada's business community would have liked to see the
government demonstrate better fiscal responsibility by curbing overall
spending and providing more immediate tax relief to Canadian taxpayers and
businesses", added Hughes Anthony.
    The Canadian Chamber also noted that the government must maintain its
focus on tackling Canada's lagging productivity, to ensure long term economic
growth and global competitiveness. "High productivity is the most critical
factor towards improving our standard of living and our ability to support and
pay for high priority programs such as education, public infrastructure, R&D
and our ability to attract people and investments", concluded Ms. Hughes

For further information:

For further information: Contact: Michel Barsalou, cell.: (613)
862-3113; Visit www.chamber.ca to view the full Canadian Chamber budget

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Canadian Chamber of Commerce

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