Minister Morneau Meets With Montréal Business Leaders to Discuss Competitiveness
August 8, 2018 – Montréal, Quebec – Department of Finance Canada
Doing what it takes to help people compete and succeed is a priority for Canada’s business leaders, and for the Government of Canada. By making investments to strengthen and grow the middle class, and help create good, well-paying jobs, the Government is building an economy that will work for more and more people.
As part of his summer cross-Canada discussions with Canadians, Finance Minister Bill Morneau met today with business leaders in Montréal. He noted that while the Canadian economy is doing well—Canada led the G7 in growth last year, and unemployment remains near record lows—the Government knows it must remain vigilant, and respond appropriately to immediate challenges. He recognized that businesses are anxious about what the future holds in light of the ongoing renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, recent tariff decisions by the United States, and the potential impact of the 2018 U.S. tax reform.
In that context, Minister Morneau listened to the concerns and suggestions of business leaders from Montréal and across the province, and talked about how the Government and the business community can better work together, adapt to changing circumstances if needed, and build a more competitive Canada.
The discussions held by the Minister of Finance across the country will help inform the Government’s responses to immediate challenges and support ongoing efforts to grow the economy over the long term.
“Canadians, and the businesses they have built, are competitive. As a government, it’s our job to do what we can to help people and businesses compete and succeed. We won’t do so by resorting to knee-jerk measures. Instead, we’ll listen to what the business community has to say, and let what we hear help shape our response to challenges that present themselves, at home and outside our borders. Together, we will make sure that Canada remains competitive, so that we can grow an economy that works for every one of us.”
- Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance
- Business investment in Canada grew about 8% in 2017, according to Statistics Canada. This represents the fastest rate of growth in five years.
- According to the Bank of Canada’s Business Outlook Survey, business investment intentions are near their highest point since the recovery from the recession of 2008-2009.
- To give Canadian businesses access to new markets and the billions of customers they represent, and to ensure that the benefits of trade are felt by more people, the Government has secured new trade and investment deals, including the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with the European Union, and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.
- Recognizing the importance of small businesses to Canadian communities and the economy as a whole, the Government cut the tax rate for Canada’s small businesses twice, to 10% in January 2018, with a further reduction to 9% set for January 2019. By this time next year, the combined average income tax rate for Canada’s small businesses will be just 12.2%—the lowest in the G7 and the fourth-lowest among members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
- To drive economic growth and build a better Canada, the Government is encouraging greater participation by women in the economy, including greater support to help more women-owned companies grow into world-class businesses.
Media may contact:
Office of the Minister of Finance
Department of Finance Canada