The 2014 Federal Budget follows up on some of the initiatives outlined in the 2013 budget with more support for apprenticeship training and job creation, additional funding to strengthen the automotive sector and ongoing tax incentives to encourage business investments in the country.
The question for many though is, will this be enough to pull Canada out what some might arguably say is the ongoing manufacturing slump in this county?
Will the additional $500 million over two years for the automotive industry actually generate more investment from automotive OEMs and parts suppliers in this country and create more jobs?
Will the Canada Apprentice Loan aimed at helping apprentices registered in Red Seal trades with the cost of training, and the new Flexibility and Innovation in Apprenticeship Technical Training program, a pilot project that encourages innovative approaches for apprentice technical training, actually encourage youth to enter the skilled trades industry?
Will the announcements to keep corporate taxes low, reduce tax compliance burdens and improve access to global markets, convince companies to remain in Canada and convince foreign firms to invest here?
While the questions are, of course, impossible to answer, they are worth considering because similar initiatives were introduced in the 2013 budget and yet problems with skilled trades shortages and low foreign and domestic business investment in the manufacturing sector persist. And it’s not just because of an overall global economic slowdown; just ask Mexico, where manufacturers in aerospace and automotive have, in the past decade, been continuously investing.
The initiatives outlined in the 2014 Federal Budget seem to be what we need to bolster the Canadian economy, but if they’re not executed correctly they won’t work.
We need to ensure bureaucracy doesn’t get in the way of implementing programs that provide financial support through either low-interest rate loans for apprentices or tax incentives for businesses.
If you want the details, you can download the 2014 budget online.