House of Commons Hansard #159 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was 2017.

Topics

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:15 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Baylis Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Yes, Madam Speaker.

My USB key has infinitely more data.

My son, and members will see a pattern here, is also an electrical engineer. He uses a system like Microsoft. He asked me about the image for the save button. It is a floppy disk. He does not know what that is because he has never used one.

That is the rate of change we are living in. That is the speed at which things are happening. I am an electrical engineer trained in this area and I have a hard time keeping up.

When this is happening, we have two courses of action. We can resist change or embrace change.

There are people who always resist technological change. They are called Luddites. “Luddite” comes from the name of Mr. Ned Ludd, who over 240 years ago had smashed what we call stocking frames. These were knitting machines, new machines introduced to automate knitting, and the textile industry picked them up. He was against automation, because it was going to cost him his job.

This is where we find ourselves. We either embrace technology and move forward, or we fight it.

Now, Canadians embrace technology. If we look at the rate of usage, say on the Internet, eight out of 10 adult Canadians are on the Internet regularly, once a day. In fact, Canadians lead the entire world in the amount of time they spend on the Internet. If we look at things today like non-cash payments, cashless payments, whether it be debit cards, credit cards, or online payments, again Canadians are in the top two or three in the world.

Canadians see and understand this need, and they embrace technology. We understand this, too. Our government understands that we must embrace technology. That leads me to our innovation budget.

To embrace technology is to understand that the rate of change is constant. There is the example I gave about changes in my father's career, in my career, and in my son's electronic engineering career. It means we need lifelong learning.

We have to make a commitment to always be learning. This is why I am so excited about this budget. It makes a very strong and clear commitment to help Canadians constantly learn. It starts with this phenomenal investment of $2.7 billion over the next six years into the labour market transfer agreements. This means people will be able to upgrade their skills. They will be able to gain experience. They will be able to start a business and help plan their careers. It is a phenomenal amount of investment to ensure that they remain up to date.

We are going to create a new organization for skills gaps. We are going to be looking at where the needs are from companies and we are going to be looking at where the people should be studying, and put them together. We have people looking for work and we have companies looking for people. We need to make sure they share those skill sets.

We are going to help adults return to school. We are going to do this by looking at new ways to support them. If people are part-time students, we are going to give them access to funds. If people have dependants, we are going to help so that they can go back to school and gain that experience. If, for example, people are receiving employment insurance and find themselves needing to upgrade their skills, they will no longer be in a conflict of interest. They will be able to continue to get their employment insurance and upgrade their skills at the same time.

We are going to invest in co-operative training, a lot more. We are going to seek to put, maybe 10,000 more positions for co-operative training, so that people not only learn from books but they get the experience hands on, working in the field.

Finally, we are going to do something that is particularly close to my heart. We are going to teach children digital skills. We are going to teach them to code. This is close to my heart, because our government underwent a series of consultations. At some point we were criticized for doing too many consultations, but regardless, we did a lot of them.

At one of my consultations on innovation, we did a round table. At the end of two hours of talk, I asked everyone at the table if they could give one message to send to the minister, what would it be. One fellow said, “Teach kids to code. That is it. Do not write anything else. Just teach kids to code.” I wrote it down. I sent it up, and sure enough I was particularly pleased to see in this budget a reference to teaching kids to code and an investment of $50 million to ensure that from kindergarten right up to grade 12, they are going to learn this new language. They are going to have the resources to get that done.

If we look at the ensemble of these innovation training programs, we see that we are capturing adults who need to be retrained. We are capturing older people who have been in the workforce and are maybe on unemployment and need to get back into the workforce. We are going to help people who need to get experience by helping them with their co-operative training. We are going to help young people.

We have an ensemble of products to help make sure that Canadians have access to innovation. That is a fundamental aspect of moving forward in the innovation economy.

The second thing we are going to do is help business innovate. Again, we have brought in a whole platform of programs to help our companies be more successful in this world.

What are we going to do? We are going to support superclusters with an investment of $950 million in these high-tech areas to ensure that Canadians are always leading in specific areas of high tech.

We are going to put a lot more money into venture capital. As new companies are formed and need to be financed, we are going to put $400 million toward financing new capital.

We are going to put money into an innovation program. Right now, there are so many programs out there it is hard sometimes to find one's way. We are going to consolidate them, simplify them, and make it easy for our businesses to find these innovative products.

Finally, we are going to invest in clean tech, which is another great opportunity for the future.

As members can see, we live in a world of constant change. We live in a world where what we know today will have to be augmented or learned upon. I have seen that in my own career. My father has seen it, and my son will see it. Each of our careers as electronics engineers will change.

Our commitment to ensuring that Canadians are up to speed and have access to education, in whatever form they need it, and our commitment to helping businesses innovate will ensure that Canadians have prosperity for years to come.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:25 p.m.

Conservative

Marilyn Gladu Conservative Sarnia—Lambton, ON

Madam Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague, a fellow engineer, for his speech. He talked about two things, skills and training, which are very important in innovation, and the need to take a quantum leap. I think it is very important as well. However, if I look at the budget document, the spending for skills and training has been delayed until 2018-19. It seems odd that if it is so important, it would be put off like that.

In the same light, although there are a lot of words about innovation in the budget, the additional funding is really a very small amount to get the quantum leap we would like to see to keep up.

I wonder if the member would comment on that.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:25 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Baylis Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Madam Speaker, whatever we do in life, someone can always say we could do it faster and we could do more of it. That is fair criticism, a fair critique. Can we do more? Can we do it faster? That is to be seen.

The important thing is that we are doing both of those things. We are doing it, and it is coming. Obviously, when it comes to skills training, a lot of this has to be integrated with provincial programs. We alone do not set the pace. We have to work with our provincial counterparts. However, the good news is that we are moving in the right direction.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:25 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Madam Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for his speech, which I must admit was quite a successful piece of marketing. I feel that if my only angle of analysis of the federal budget was that of my colleague, I would almost want to applaud, it was that good. However, the reality is something altogether different.

The Liberals are used to give us window dressing or half-measures. For example, in his speech, my colleague talked about how important it was for workers who had lost their jobs to have access to training to expand their opportunities, without necessarily losing their benefits. We can only applaud the idea. However, we must realize that training is a provincial responsibility. Since that has to be negotiated with the provinces, it is not likely to happen tomorrow.

In addition, employment insurance is strictly a federal jurisdiction. As we speak, 6 out of 10 Canadians who lose their jobs are unable to qualify for EI benefits. The budget is totally silent on this matter.

Does my hon. colleague not think that it would have been preferable to first ensure that workers are eligible for EI benefits before they can expand their training?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:25 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Baylis Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Madam Speaker, the member is correct when he says this is good news. I was not able to talk about the entire budget, because it is enormous. I decided to talk about issues relating to education.

He is also correct to say that this falls under both provincial and federal jurisdiction. It will take time to negotiate the agreements, but we are going to do that work to ensure that if a person needs social assistance at some point while working to earn a living, they will be able to do that.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:25 p.m.

Liberal

Lloyd Longfield Liberal Guelph, ON

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague from Pierrefonds—Dollard, as well as the industry committee, where the member is exceptional, with his technical background and what he adds to the discussions, similar to what he has done this afternoon.

I was really surprised to hear the member for Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan comment on how this budget does not apply to all of Canada. One area of the budget is on superclusters, which, by definition, help all regions of Canada in areas where we could be world leaders. There is a $950-million commitment to develop superclusters. I am wondering if the hon. member could give us his thoughts on the superclusters in the budget.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:25 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Baylis Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Madam Speaker, the member for Guelph is perceptive, as always. He is absolutely right that this is a phenomenal investment of $950 million for superclusters. These clusters are not regionally based. They are going to cover the full span of our country. To say that it is one region or another is patently false on the part of the other member who said such a thing.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

April 4th, 2017 / 4:30 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Breton Liberal Shefford, QC

Madam Speaker, I am delighted to rise in the House to speak to the 2017 budget. The title of the budget, “Building a Strong Middle Class”, is actually a very good indication of our government’s intentions.

I think it is crucial that people in my riding of Shefford, and all Canadians, clearly understand that the 2017 budget is an important step in our government’s long-term plan, in order to create jobs and strengthen the middle class and those working hard to join it.

When we formed the government, we promised Canadians that we would make middle-class families our priority. That is what we have done, and today families can clearly see that their government supports them. After the more generous, better targeted and non-taxable Canada child tax benefit was instituted, and after reducing income tax for middle-class people by 7%, a measure that affects 20,000 families in my riding, we will continue helping the people who need it most.

The measures we have taken to date have a positive impact on our economy. The facts are there to show it. We can confirm that our plan is working when we see over 250,000 jobs created in the last seven months and an unemployment rate that has gone from 7.1% to 6.6% since we were elected in 2015.

The International Monetary Fund cites us as an example for the whole world. We are experiencing the best economic growth among the G7 countries. We are on the right track.

The 2017 budget tabled by our government proposes a number of measures that meet the needs and priorities of the people in my riding, and particularly of the middle class.

For example, the budget fosters the success of small and medium-sized enterprises. Job creation enables people to get the skills and tools they need to succeed. The creation of the new strategic innovation fund will enable us to attract, support and grow Canadian enterprises in dynamic and emerging sectors. Sectors like agri-food, digital technology, clean technology, and advanced manufacturing will be particularly targeted, thanks to a $1.26-billion investment in Quebec. The new strategic innovation fund will be far-reaching in its impact. It demonstrates an immediate intention to strengthen our communities through a long-term vision.

The budget also makes social investments that very directly affect the public. Budget 2017 provides for more support for home care and for mental health initiatives. Through an $11-billion investment over the next ten years, the government will put an additional $1.4 billion into improving home care and $1.1 billion into supporting mental health initiatives.

Another of our government’s social measures is certainly the creation of the federal strategy on gender-based violence, which will help ensure that all Canadians have the opportunity to live in a healthy, welcoming, and inclusive community. A $100-million investment over five years will make substantial progress possible.

The people in my riding also need access to affordable housing. Under the new national housing strategy, which will support the construction, renovation, and repair of affordable housing stock, we will be making historic investments of $11.2 billion over the next 11 years. These funds will be used to build better communities, with a real increase in the number of affordable housing units in Canada.

I am very proud of our team’s second budget, since it enables us to continue our efforts to improve people’s quality of life and invest where the real needs are for Canadians and for my riding: affordable housing, support in the home, mental health, and combatting homelessness.

As we know, Canadians who care for family members often have to deal with a family caregiver tax credit system that is complex and difficult for families to understand.

Clearly, they deserve better than that. The 2017 budget therefore offers a unified tax credit for family caregivers at the time when families need it most. Furthermore, the improvements and increases to the employment insurance system, with more flexible maternity and parental benefits and the creation of a new benefit for family caregivers, are also major steps forward that will provide invaluable assistance to people all across Canada.

What we can take from this is that budget 2017 aims to give everyone a real and fair chance to succeed. This budget also provides for investments in such areas as skills and training, so that all Canadians have access to the opportunities they need in order to succeed now and in the future.

Our government’s investments, which are set out in this budget, will help workers upgrade their skills, will help young people acquire the skills and experience they need to launch their careers, and will ensure that more people who are unemployed are able to get training and still be eligible for employment insurance benefits.

In addition, budget 2017 sends our government’s clear message that it intends to improve our neighbourhoods and make them healthier places to live, by focusing on investments in infrastructure. I know that the communities in my riding are stronger when we can provide them with cultural centres, sports and recreation facilities, and public spaces that are more accessible for children and families.

When I see the efforts being made by our government and the significant investments it is making in these areas, I am proud of how we are listening to Canadians. We are showing them that we are listening to them. I can attest to the fact that the people of my riding are telling me how pleased they are with the budget and the things being done by our government.

I would also like to talk about the significant progress the budget brings to the agriculture and agrifood sector, something that is particularly important to me, since 80% of my riding is in an agricultural zone. Budget 2017 shows the significant support that our government is providing for the agriculture and agrifood sector, which not only employs one out of every eight Canadians but also generates high-quality jobs everywhere in Canada and in my riding.

It is also worth pointing out that the budget identifies agrifood as one of the three priority areas in terms of growth and the creation of well-paid jobs in Canada. We know that demand for food will continue to grow worldwide. Our agricultural producers already have an excellent reputation on the world stage, and our products are safe and high quality.

However, we must be prepared to meet the growing world demand in the agrifood sector and take advantage of this excellent opportunity. That is why budget 2017 sets an ambitious target: to expand agrifood exports to at least $75 billion by 2025, an increase of 35% over 2015.

Now more than ever, the agrifood sector is globalized and technology-based. Budget 2017 continues our government’s support for science, innovation, and the global competitiveness of the agrifood sector. We are therefore aiming to grow the Canadian agrifood sector through an investment of $10 billion for exports and increased investments in value-added processing.

In conclusion, we all know that we can still do more to help the middle class and those working hard to join it, and that is what we will continue to do. Our government knows that it is always possible to do better, and we know that the best way to ensure greater prosperity for more Canadians is to make smart and responsible investments in the economy so that everyone will prosper in the long term.

I know that this budget is an excellent one for the people of my riding. They have told me that it is. On their behalf, I congratulate us, as a government, on this historic progress for our country.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:40 p.m.

Conservative

Harold Albrecht Conservative Kitchener—Conestoga, ON

Madam Speaker, my colleague mentioned standing up for the middle class during his comments. He also referred frequently to the farming or agriculture sector.

I wonder if he has had a chance to look at page 111 of the budget in English, because it talks clearly about advancing agricultural science and innovation, and $60 million is budgeted there for agricultural science and innovation. However, the fine print shows only $4 million of that is budgeted for the coming year.

When his colleagues have all agreed to today that this is a budget for all of Canada, does my colleague really think that an investment of $4 million this year and only $9 million next year, spread across the country of Canada, will make a significant impact on the ability of our farmers to innovate and improve their operations?

I am hoping he does not, and if he is honest I think he will have to admit that this is a pretty embarrassing budget when it comes to supporting the agricultural sector.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:40 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Breton Liberal Shefford, QC

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague for his question.

The agrifood and agriculture sector is an extremely important one for our government and we are proud to support it.

As I said just now, $10 billion will be invested over the next ten years in exports and investments in innovation. Agrifood and agriculture are central to those investments. One out of eight jobs in Canada depends on agriculture; we are proud of that. Demand is going to increase over the coming years and our government will support the farmers and agricultural producers of our country.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:40 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Madam Speaker, I am always a little surprised by the pomposity of the presentations made to us. I would like to come back to employment insurance, since my colleague has given me numerous examples to go back to.

When we talk about the program, for example, that was going to help people who give birth, which is good news in itself, as well as family caregivers and people who get training, we always have to keep in mind that six out of ten Canadians do not qualify for employment insurance. Also, if I may remind my learned colleague, the employment insurance fund is entirely financed by premiums paid by employers and workers. Where, then, is the government’s effort in this regard?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:40 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Breton Liberal Shefford, QC

Madam Speaker, this question sounds like the one that was asked a few minutes ago.

Obviously, we can always do better. What is worth noting in the budget that has been presented is that there are substantial improvements in terms of ease of access and flexibility of employment insurance benefits for maternity and paternity leave and for family caregivers. These are very important steps that are taken in this budget. That was part of a number of consultations that took place in recent months. I am proud to announce these excellent initiatives today.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:40 p.m.

Conservative

Cathay Wagantall Conservative Yorkton—Melville, SK

Madam Speaker, I just want to refer to what the government has committed to national defence spending, which is nothing.

Despite the clear need for investments in Canada's national defence, the Minister of Finance stated this week that the government believes the military is appropriately provisioned, and yet day after day in this House we have battled back and forth, with the government saying we have a capability gap.

My question to the member is simply this: what happened to that gap?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:40 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Breton Liberal Shefford, QC

Madam Speaker, my hon. colleague is asking very specific questions, and I appreciate that.

Obviously, there are many items in this budget that favour investments for middle-class people. In terms of security, people are very proud of the budget. Today and over the course of recent weeks, the minister has expressed his appreciation of all the security considerations in the budget. Today, I am proud to say that this spending, or these investments, are very important for our national security.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:45 p.m.

Liberal

Majid Jowhari Liberal Richmond Hill, ON

Madam Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the hon. member for Bourassa.

I am honoured to stand in the House to discuss budget 2017 and its potential impact on my riding of Richmond Hill. This year's federal budget follows in the footsteps of budget 2016 and offers a road map to individual prosperity for Canadians and to economic success for Canada. This budget provides detailed provisions as to how the Liberal government has listened to Canadians and is taking action to make the necessary financial commitments that will ensure that each and every Canadian has a real and fair opportunity to improve their lives.

I will focus my remarks today on four key areas. First, I will highlight how budget 2017 provides new opportunities for Canadians, including our youth, to strengthen existing skills, to develop new ones, and to build a qualified workforce of the future, while also providing our seniors with the ability to sustain a better quality of life.

Second, I will explain how budget 2017 encourages business innovation and economic progress for Canada.

Third, I will discuss how this budget will provide infrastructure support for the modernization and resiliency of our neighbourhoods.

Fourth and finally, I will describe how budget 2017 provides for more and enhanced home care, mental health services, child care services, and affordable housing for those who need it the most.

With this budget, the Liberal government upholds the promise of progress that will benefit all Canadians. On the topics of youth and seniors and digital skills, our government will be allocating $50 million over two years so that digital skills trainers can apply to teach digital skills to students from kindergarten to grade 12. This is excellent news, given that the Canadian economy is rapidly changing, and my colleague before me talked about that change. This commitment will prepare individuals, starting from a young age, to gain the proper skills to prepare for the jobs of the future.

Seniors will also benefit from digital skill training, as budget 2017 will provide $29.5 million over five years for a new digital literacy exchange program to support not-for-profit organizations to implement initiatives that teach basic digital skills, with a focus on groups that can benefit from acquiring these skills.

As noted in the 2016 Town of Richmond Hill economic development strategy, youth up to age 24 make up 32% of the population. The population of seniors aged 70 and over was 8%. Together, they make up 40% of the Town of Richmond Hill's entire population. Therefore, 40% of Richmond Hill's population could benefit from the federal funding provided in budget 2017 for digital skills training.

On the business innovation side, another aspect of budget 2017 that would greatly benefit Richmond Hill is the provision of funds to encourage business innovation in Canada. The budget allocates $950 million over five years, starting in 2017-18, to support a number of business-led innovation superclusters that have the greatest potential to accelerate economic growth. By investing in superclusters and also providing the strategic innovation fund, SIF, with $1.26 billion over five years to consolidate and simplify business innovation programming, including the strategic aerospace and defence initiative, the technology demonstration program, and the auto innovation fund, where there is actually an extra $200 million over three years in new funding, our government is leading the way.

Budget 2017 also provides for a venture capital catalyst initiative, with $400 million over three years for late-stage venture capital to young, established businesses with revenues to enhance their operations. Budget 2017 has recognized an identifiable need in our economy, and businesses will benefit from it.

This represents the innovative leadership that the government and budget 2017 delivers for Canadians.

On the topic of infrastructure, budget 2017 provides funding for infrastructure support for the modernization and resiliency of our neighbourhoods and communities. The budget has made a significant investment in public transit projects that would shorten commutes, decrease air pollution, and allow Canadians to spend more time with their families, through an investment of $20.1 billion over 11 years that would be allocated to provinces and transit systems, based on ridership and population.

I am confident that Richmond Hill and York Region Transit will receive a fair share of the funding to put toward local priorities, such as a subway line from Finch subway to the Highway 7 extension for Richmond Hill. This will help a significant portion of my constituency, which will benefit from the expansion of the subway line.

I will now talk about budget 2017's contribution to health care, home care, child care, and affordable housing for Canadians who most need it. I think I speak for all of my colleagues in the House when I say that Canada's publicly funded universal health care system is a source of national pride. It is also an essential foundation for a strong, fair, and prosperous nation.

As of today, the federal government has reached new health funding agreements with 12 provinces and territories that have accepted their share of $11 billion over 10 years to provide enhanced health care for all Canadians, including as well funding for home care and mental health support. Of this funding, $1.9 billion will be allocated in support of mental health initiatives in Ontario. Improving mental health services directly impacts the riding of Richmond Hill, giving support where it is definitely needed. In addition, $2.3 billion will be dedicated to better home care in Ontario, including addressing critical home care infrastructure requirements.

I know this funding will help to break down barriers for individuals, families, and communities, such as mine, that prevent them from receiving better care and reaching their fullest potential.

In addition, the budget allocates $3.2 billion dollars to provinces and territories for a federal-provincial partnership to support affordable housing. This will be helpful to Canada's seniors, persons with disabilities, and to others needing accessibility modifications, helping them to live independently. Furthermore, $5 billion will be invested over the next 11 years for a new national housing fund to address critical housing issues faced by the most vulnerable members of society.

In addition, the government proposes to allocate $7 billion over 10 years to support and create more high-quality, affordable child care spaces across the country. I know many hard-working individuals and families in my riding who can benefit extremely from this funding by making it easier for them to find safe, adequate, and affordable places to live with quality and affordable child care.

Budget 2017 puts people first. It delivers the help that Canadians need. It is an essential step to restoring prosperity to Canada's middle class. It provides new opportunities for our youth and seniors by equipping them with skills that they need. Budget 2017 encourages job creation, entrepreneurship, and business innovation. The budget also provides much-needed assistance for infrastructure. It also supports more and better home care, mental health support, child care support, and affordable housing for all Canadians.

I am proud to stand behind budget 2017. It is the right road map for our country and the efforts of our government to restore prosperity to the middle class.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Conservative

Dianne Lynn Watts Conservative South Surrey—White Rock, BC

Madam Speaker, I was happy to listen to my colleague talk about many things in the budget, but we need to talk about what is not in the budget.

When we look at homelessness, there are zero dollars for this year and zero for next year. For cultural recreation infrastructure, there are zero dollars for this year and zero for next year. For disability accessibility, there are zero dollars for this year and zero for next year. For creating Canada's growth economy, there are zero dollars for this year and zero for next year. For skills training, there is nothing for this year. For skills training and innovation, there is nothing for this year. When we look at the transit tax, it is purported that it is only for the rich.

Then we can look at innovation. I thank the member for bringing up innovation. When the Conservatives were in government, we started the science and tech co-operation agreements in 2007. I am glad the Liberals are building on the manufacturing and auto sector innovation, as well as the Canada Foundation for Innovation.

When we look at all the programs that were under way under the Conservative government, there is a lot of repackaging.

When we look at all the things happening now for the middle class, nothing is going to be funded over the next two years and the budget is back ended. Could the member please comment on that?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Liberal

Majid Jowhari Liberal Richmond Hill, ON

Madam Speaker, let me focus on what is actually included in the budget. Let me talk about $1.9 billion for mental health for Ontario. Let me talk about $2.3 billion for home care. Let me talk about $3.2 billion for affordable housing. Let me talk about $5 billion for national housing. Let me talk about $7 billion for high-quality, affordable child care spaces. Let me talk about $50 million for youth skills. Let me talk about $29.5 million for senior digital skills. Let me talk about $950 million for business-led innovation. Let me talk about $1.26 billion, plus another $200 million, for a strategic innovation fund. Let me talk about $400 million for late-stage venture capital. Let me talk about $20.1 billion for transit. Let me talk about $11 billion for home care. They are all coming over the next five years and it is helping us deliver what we committed to deliver.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan NDP Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Madam Speaker, as my colleague from the Conservative Party mentioned, unfortunately there are some things that are not in the budget. He talked about enabling all Canadians to move forward and have equal access. Yet, the government has again refused to deliver on what the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has ordered, which is the government ensure comparable access to services by aboriginal families, in particular aboriginal children.

Could he speak, from the bottom of his heart, as to how he could support a budget that still refuses to follow what the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has said and finally give equal opportunity to aboriginal children, so they too can succeed in Canada?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Liberal

Majid Jowhari Liberal Richmond Hill, ON

Madam Speaker, I can assure the member that there has been investment made and planned for aboriginals. The focus is on skills training, giving them an education, and giving them an opportunity to have the skills needed to contribute to the development of the economy and their communities.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Conservative

Alupa Clarke Conservative Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Madam Speaker, can my colleague tell me how many billions of dollars out of the $80 billion provided for infrastructure will be invested this year?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Liberal

Majid Jowhari Liberal Richmond Hill, ON

Madam Speaker, this budget, and the budget before it, has created what I call confidence in the economy, confidence to the tune of over 250,000 jobs in the last quarter, the majority of them full-time jobs. That is the confidence the budget and the $80 billion have created for the people and the economy.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Liberal

Emmanuel Dubourg Liberal Bourassa, QC

Madam Speaker, Canadians have long understood that we are stronger when the middle class and those working so hard to join it can participate in the economy as much as possible and contribute to economic growth that benefits us all.

For example, budget 2017 includes measures to remove barriers that are a drag on our economy and that slow people down. It also includes measures to help the people who need it the most, because we are only worth as much as our most vulnerable fellow citizens.

There are many benefits for the riding of Bourassa, which I represent. I am very pleased with the last two budgets tabled by the Liberal government. I will tell you how this budget helps my riding. First, the riding of Bourassa is enriched by its diversity but faces enormous challenges. Average incomes in my riding are among the lowest. A significant proportion of economic families live below the poverty line. Seventy-three per cent of dwellings are occupied by renters and 43% of tenant households spend 30% of their income on housing. Single-parent families also make up a very large percentage of these people and, needless to say, the unemployment rate is high, especially among young people.

This budget, like last year's budget, is helping middle-class families in my riding. I talked about last year's budget first, but I would like to briefly remind my colleagues that for the 19,000 children in the riding of Bourassa, the Canada child benefit represents $8 million per month. This money will stimulate the economy and help families.

In this budget, the Liberal Party government is investing in youth. For example, in January, I announced $213,000 for Rond-Point jeunesse au travail, a youth employment organization, and $332,000 for a youth centre called Café-Jeunesse multiculturel to create 26 jobs for young people in the riding. In February, I announced $850,000 for the Corporation de développement économique communautaire de Montréal-Nord to help 40 young people find jobs or start their own businesses. The month of March just ended, and I announced a $718,583 investment for summer jobs. The budget is enabling us to invest, so that means 233 new summer jobs this year for young people aged 15 to 30. We did this last year too. Summer jobs are being created not just in the riding of Bourassa, but across the country. These budgets enable us to make investments that help youth.

I am sure that my colleagues have read the budget, but I will just quickly remind them of what is in the budget specifically for young people. We want post-secondary education to be more accessible and more affordable. What are we doing about that? We are investing $12.5 million over six years in a new project to look at new ways to better market the Canada learning bond and reduce the barriers to higher education for low-income families. We are investing $38 million over four years to renew federal funding in Pathways to Education Canada, which will help more young people in low-income communities to complete their high school education and successfully transition to post-secondary education and the workforce. There will be a $59.8-million investment over four years and $17 million annually thereafter to expand eligibility to student loans and grants for part-time students in order to help even more students become eligible for financial assistance. We also want to develop the skills of tomorrow.

We are investing $14 million over two years in renewed funding for Futurpreneur Canada in order to continue supporting the next generation of entrepreneurs through mentorship and funding. Futurpreneur Canada, a national not-for-profit organization, will match these investments with funding received from other government and private sector partners.

Again with a view to developing the skills of tomorrow, $50 million over two years will fund a program to provide coding and digital skills education to more young Canadians. The Government intends to launch a competitive process through which digital skills training organizations can apply for funding.

A total of $10.8 million will be allocated over five years to introduce diverse groups of young Canadians to the power and potential of the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics through hands-on learning experiences. We also want to help young people gain work experience. We need to break the cycle of no job without experience and no experience without a job.

I just talked about jobs for youth and, as it happens, my colleague, the Minister of Finance provided additional amounts to help young people in budget 2017. This time, we are talking about $395.5 million over three years under the youth employment strategy to create job opportunities and help young people develop the skills they need. That is in addition to the $330 million a year that is already being invested in the youth employment strategy.

The measures that I mentioned are just some of what is contained in the budget. I wanted to highlight those measures to show how the budget will specifically impact people in the riding of Bourassa and all across Canada. However, the Minister of Finance presented many other measures to stimulate the economy and protect the environment. A total of $11 billion will be allocated over 10 years for affordable housing. I gave some statistics on housing in the riding of Bourassa. A total of $527 million will be invested in innovation, $723 million in training, and $900 million over six years in workforce development agreements.

Let us not forget that, last year, the Minister of Finance allocated $444 million to combat tax evasion and avoidance. The minister just increased that amount. He allocated $523.9 million to the Canada Revenue Agency so that it can continue that fight.

I was surprised to see on page 183 of the budget that the government included a measure that will result in $17 million in forgone tariff revenues to enable developing countries to participate in the market. The Minister of Finance made a special note of this in the budget. Haiti is one of the least developed countries. Haitian merchants and producers can take advantage of this measure to pay the lowest possible tariffs when exporting their products so they can show that Haiti produces quality goods and get Canadians interested.

Time is running out, so I will end with this. The budget will help newcomers to Canada with foreign credentials overcome barriers to getting those credentials recognized.

The budget includes $27.5 million over five years plus another $5.5 million thereafter to help them.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

5:10 p.m.

Conservative

Alupa Clarke Conservative Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Madam Speaker, I would like to ask the member for Bourassa the same question I asked his Liberal friend from Richmond Hill: of the $80 billion in infrastructure spending pledged in the 2016 budget, how many billions of dollars have actually flowed since then, including in this budget?

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

5:10 p.m.

Liberal

Emmanuel Dubourg Liberal Bourassa, QC

Madam Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. member for his question.

I believe it is a question that he had the opportunity to ask the minister, who literally did not have the time to list all the amounts invested in each county or province. What is important for Canadians is that we are making significant investments to stimulate the economy and ensure that everyone can participate in and contribute to Canada's economy.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

5:10 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Madam Speaker, I listened with interest to the passionate speech of my colleague from Bourassa on the budgets of 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023, 2024, 2024, 2026 and 2027, if I have properly understood the spread of the measures. To see the millions and billions of dollars gush forward, well, we felt rich for a few seconds, while the reality is that this government has dragged us into a colossal deficit, which was to be modest at $10 billion, but is at least moderate at $29 billion.

Since we started our debate, we have heard all of our Liberal colleagues provide a list of expenditures, but never a list of new revenues.

The question I am asking is simple: what are the new revenues that the government thinks it will get to be able to fund all these requests without raising taxes and fees of all kinds for middle-class Canadians?