Government of Canada - Tabling of the 2008-2009 Main Estimates

    OTTAWA, Feb. 28 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Vic Toews, President of the
Treasury Board, today tabled in the House of Commons the 2008-2009 Main
Estimates totalling $220.6 billion in expenditures.
    "The Government of Canada is continuing to invest in priority areas such
the environment, defence and security, health, and social programs," said
President Toews. "These Main Estimates show this Government is ensuring that
tax dollars are spent on programs that deliver results and are focused on
priorities that meet the needs of Canadians."
    The 2008-2009 Main Estimates provide information on $220.6 billion in
budgetary expenditures, including $79 billion in voted spending, such as
departmental operating and capital expenditures, and $107.9 billion in
statutory spending previously approved by Parliament. The 2008-2009 Main
Estimates also provide information on interest payments on the public debt
totalling $33.7 billion.
    Main Estimates provide a detailed listing of the resources required by
individual departments and agencies for the upcoming fiscal year in order to
deliver the programs for which they are responsible. This document identifies
the spending authorities (Votes) and the amounts to be included in the
Appropriation Bill that Parliament will be asked to approve in March 2008, to
enable the Government to proceed with its spending plans.
    Please refer to the attached backgrounders for further details on the
2008-2009 Main Estimates and information on the Estimates process. The Main
Estimates and related documents are posted on the Treasury Board of Canada
Secretariat Web site at:


    TTY (Telecommunications device for the hearing impaired) - (613) 957-9090

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                                                            February 28, 2008

                   Overview of the 2008-2009 Main Estimates

    Part I - The Government Expense Plan


    The Main Estimates present information on both budgetary and non-budgetary
spending authorities.

    Budgetary Main Estimates

    Budgetary expenditures include the cost of servicing the public debt;
operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of
government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.
These Main Estimates support the Government's request for Parliament's
authority to spend $79 billion under program authorities that require
Parliament's annual approval of their spending limits. The remaining
$141.6 billion is for statutory items previously approved by Parliament,
including interest payments on public debt, and the detailed forecasts are
provided for information purposes only.

    Non-Budgetary Main Estimates

    Non-budgetary expenditures (loans, investments and advances) are outlays
that represent changes in the composition of the financial assets of the
Government of Canada. The 2008-2009 Main Estimates include a total forecast in
non-budgetary spending authorities of $856.7 million. Of this, voted
non-budgetary spending authorities set out in these Estimates amount to
$61.3 million.

    Table 1 presents 2008-09 Main Estimates compared to 2007-08 Main Estimates
as tabled on February 27, 2007.

    Table 1: Total Main Estimates

    (millions)        Budgetary    Budgetary       Total
    Voted              79,015.2         61.3    79,076.5
    Statutory         141,595.4        795.4   142,390.8
    Total Main
     Estimates        220,610.6        856.7   221,467.3

                                                             Change in Total
                                2007-2008                        Spending
                     Budgetary     Budgetary       Total         $        %
    Voted             79,928.8          94.3    75,023.1   4,053.4      5.4
    Statutory        135,382.1       1,285.2   136,667.3   5,723.5      4.2
    Total Main
     Estimates       210,310.9       1,379.5   211,690.4   9,776.9      4.6

    In total, the 2008-2009 Main Estimates (all budgetary and non-budgetary
expenditures) represent an increase of $9.8 billion or 4.6% relative to the
2007-2008 Main Estimates. This is accounted for by increases of $10.3 billion
in budgetary spending (such as the cost of servicing the public debt;
operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of
government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations -
see Table 2) and a decrease of $522.8 million in non-budgetary spending.

    Budgetary Main Estimates - A net $10.3 billion increase

    Given both production and secrecy constraints and the fact that the Budget
was tabled two days before the Main Estimates, not all new spending plans can
be reflected in the Main Estimates. Therefore, while these Main Estimates
represent the major part of the Government's spending plans, additional
changes to the amounts will be dealt with in Supplementary Estimates later
during the fiscal year.
    These Main Estimates represent the Government's expense plan as announced
in its March 2007 Budget, as well as further updates as provided in its
October 2007 Economic and Fiscal Update.
    Table 2 presents the total planned budgetary expense of $220.6 billion for
2008-2009 according to type of payment.

    Table 2: Budgetary Main Estimates by Type of Payment

    ($ millions)                     Main Estimates      Change in Spending
                              2008-2009   2007-2008           $           %
    Major transfers to other
     levels of government:
    Fiscal Equalization        13,619.9    11,676.3     1,943.6        16.6
    Canada Health Transfer     22,629.3    21,348.4     1,280.9         6.0
    Canada Social Transfer     10,557.7     8,800.0     1,757.7        20.0
    Payment to Ontario            150.0        00.0       150.0         N\A
    Territorial Financing       2,312.9     2,142.5       170.4         8.0
    Alternative Payments for
     Standing Programs         (3,256.8)   (3,010.0)     (246.8)        8.2
    Youth Allowance Recovery     (717.4)     (661.0)      (56.4)        8.5
    Other statutory subsidies      32.0        32.0         0.0         0.0
    Sub-total major transfers
     to other levels of
     government                45,327.6    40,328.2     4,999.4        12.4
    Major transfers to persons:
    Elderly Benefits           33,590.0    32,059.0     1,531.0         4.8
    Employment Insurance       15,100.0    15,075.0        25.0         0.2
    Universal Child Care
     Benefit                    2,470.0     2,460.0        10.0         0.4
    Sub-total major transfers
     to persons                51,160.0    49,594.0     1,566.0         3.2
    Transfers to international
     financial organizations      693.1       539.5       153.6        28.5
    Other transfer payments
     and subsidies             29,306.3    27,329.5     1,976.8         7.2
    Total transfer payments   126,487.0   117,791.2     8,695.8         7.4
    Payments to Crown
     corporations               5,188.6     4,997.6       191.0         3.8
    Operating and capital      55,252.0    52,825.1     2,426.9         4.6
    Public debt charges        33,683.0    34,697.0    (1,014.0)       (2.9)
    Total Budgetary Main
     Estimates                220,610.6   210,310.9    10,299.7         4.9
    Adjustments to reconcile
     to the October 2007
     Economic and Fiscal
     Update(1)                  5,392.4     5,568.0      (175.6)       (3.2)
    Net Adjustment, from net
     to gross basis of Budget
     Presentation(2)           15,305.0    14,893.1       411.9         2.8
    Total Budgetary
     Expenses(3)              241,308.0   230,772.0    10,536.0         4.6

    (1) Includes adjustments for the impact of accrual accounting,
    expenditures charged to prior years and an anticipated lapse. It also
    includes expenses not yet allocated for initiatives that require further
    development or legislation.
    (2) A net adjustment, to account for major components of budgetary
    expenses that are affected by the move in Budget 2006 from a net basis to
    a gross basis of presentation (the Canada Child Tax Benefit, department
    revenues levied for specific services and revenues of consolidated Crown
    (3) Total budgetary expenses are consistent with the October 2007
    Economic and Fiscal Update with the exceptions, as noted above, where
    current forecasts of the statutory obligations have been reflected. In
    addition, public debt charges also reflect the most current forecast.

For further information:

For further information: Mike Storeshaw, Director of Communications,
Office of the President of the Treasury Board, (613) 952-5051; Robert
Makichuk, Chief, Media Relations, Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, (613)

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