PRIME Minister Stephen Harper on Monday participated in a discussion with small- and medium-sized business leaders in Quebec on his plan to support economic growth and job creation over the short- and long-term. The discussion focused on the key pillars of the Conservative Government’s world-leading Economic Action Plan, including low taxes, free trade, support for skills-training, immigration reforms, and investments in infrastructure and innovation.
“Since first taking office we have been focused on our plan to support jobs and economic growth,” Harper said. “We have lowered taxes and made key investments to help small- and medium-sized businesses expand and hire.”
Key parts of Prime Minister Harper’s Economic Action Plan include:
* Lowering taxes on families and Canadian businesses including, most recently, the largest tax cut for small- and medium-sized businesses in over a quarter century;
* Concluding free trade agreements with 39 countries, including the European Union and South Korea, to significantly increase export opportunities for Canadian businesses and create jobs for Canadian workers;
* Providing support to Canadians completing apprenticeships, and establishing the Canada Job Grant to ensure skills-training leads to future employment;
* Reforming Canada’s immigration system to ensure that it complements the country’s economic needs;
* Launching the longest and largest investment plan for public infrastructure in Canada’s history;
* Helping firms invest in new technologies and research and development through targeted tax relief and funding partnerships with Canada’s universities and colleges.
Harper claimed his Economic Action Plan has helped Canada become a leader among industrialized countries on a range of economic indicators including employment growth, low debt levels, infrastructure spending, and public investments in science and technology. The result is that there have been 1.3 million net new jobs created in Canada since the depths of the global recession.
“The global economy remains uncertain,” Harper said. “That’s why we’re focused on staying on course and executing our plan.”
He observed that the plans of the other parties represented a major departure from his Economic Action Plan.
“Justin [Trudeau] thinks budgets balance themselves, but small business owners know otherwise,” said Harper. “Thomas Mulcair’s plan to hike taxes and pile on debt will create economic chaos, putting Canadian workers and small businesses at risk. Our low-tax plan is helping create jobs and move Canada’s economy forward.”