Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today to speak for the second time about Bill C-3, which deals with the establishment of the Canada pension plan investment board.
As I said previously, the Bloc Quebecois supports this bill. This initiative is very similar to the one Quebec took in the 1960s when it established the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. This bill puts the final touch to a reform that is already underway, by transferring the Canada Pension Plan's assets to the board.
This is as good a time as any, just a few days after the finance minister tabled his budget, to point out the link between the bill and an issue of great concern to Canadians and Quebeckers, namely our aging population. As we know, the number of retirees will increase over the next few decades. The latest budget, which mentions the consequences of Bill C-3, does not adequately address the issue of making sure Canadians and Quebeckers will have sufficient savings upon retirement to keep them from poverty's doorstep. In this respect, Bill C-3 only deals in part with the issues of the aging population and the number of retirees.
There is still a lot of work to do and, as I said yesterday, I would have expected this budget to announce a thorough rethinking of the ways we, as a society, can make sure Canadians and Quebeckers put aside the money they will need when they retire.
The only rather worthwhile thing the finance minister has come up with in the budget is a measure to raise the limit of RRSPs from $13,500 to $18,000 over a number of years, but this will only benefit a minority of Canadians and Quebeckers. In Quebec, only 1.5% of taxpayers contribute the maximum of $13,500.
The budget did not put enough emphasis on this, and that is unfortunate. Although Bill C-3 is a major step toward ensuring that workers have adequate retirement incomes in the coming years, I have to admit, unfortunately, that this is just a drop in the bucket, compared to the challenges facing society in Canada and Quebec.
Therefore, as I said at the beginning of my speech, we will be voting in favour of Bill C-3. The Canadian Alliance has withdrawn its amendment, which, in our view, was totally inappropriate. When society agrees to defer tax payments for a number of Canadians, it is entitled to expect that the savings will be reinvested in Canada and in Quebec first.
As I mentioned earlier, the Bloc Quebecois will be supporting the government on Bill C-3, although we do realize that it is a just a tiny drop in the bucket, given the scope of the problem.