Today, the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Quebec Lieutenant, Pablo Rodriguez, met with residents of Longueuil to highlight Budget 2023’s investments in an affordable economy.
Canada has made a remarkable recovery from the COVID recession. Its economic growth was the strongest in the G7 over the last year, and today, 830,000 more Canadians are employed than before the pandemic, including 136,900 people in Quebec. Inflation in Canada has fallen for eight months in a row; our unemployment rate is near its record low; and, supported by our Canada-wide system of affordable early learning and child care, the labour force participation rate for women aged 25 to 54 reached a record high of 85.7 percent in February.
Budget 2023 builds on this important progress.
To make life more affordable, Budget 2023 delivers the new Grocery Rebate, offering targeted inflation relief for 11 million Canadians and families who need it most, with up to an additional $467 for eligible couples with children; an additional $234 for single Canadians without children; and an additional $225 for seniors, on average. The government is also taking action to crack down on junk fees and predatory lending, lower credit card transaction fees for small businesses, and help Canadians keep more money in their pockets.
To strengthen Canada’s universal public health care system, the budget delivers $198.3 billion-including $37.4 billion in Quebec-to reduce backlogs, expand access to family health services, and ensure provinces and territories can provide the high quality and timely health care Canadians expect and deserve. Budget 2023 also introduces a new Canadian Dental Care Plan to help up to 9 million Canadians and ensure no Canadian has to choose between taking care of their health and paying the bills at the end of the month.
To build Canada’s clean economy, Budget 2023 makes transformative investments to fight climate change and create new opportunities for Canadian businesses and workers. This includes significant measures that will deliver cleaner and more affordable energy, support investment in our communities, and create good-paying jobs.
With a responsible fiscal plan that will see Canada maintain the lowest deficit and the lowest net debt-to-GDP ratio in the G7, Budget 2023 will help to build a Canada that is more secure, more sustainable, and more affordable for people from coast to coast to coast.