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Ontario Calls for Continued Partnership on Investment, Opportunity, and Growth

TORONTO — Today, Peter Bethlenfalvy, Ontario’s Minister of Finance issued the following statement in response to the release of the 2022 Federal Budget:

“I would like to congratulate Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland on the release of the 2022 Federal Budget.

In a time of global uncertainty, Canada needs a long-term vision. An ambitious plan that will address long-standing economic challenges and deliver the investments that will lay the foundation for our future prosperity. Our government is proud of the strong, collaborative partnership we have built with the federal government to deliver on our plan to build a stronger Ontario.

We applaud the federal government’s continued commitment to the next generation of automotive manufacturing, including battery technology and electric and hybrid vehicles. Our strong partnership in this essential sector is creating jobs in communities across Ontario, from Oakville and Oshawa to Alliston, Ingersoll, and Windsor.

Investing in infrastructure is a key national priority and critical for boosting our economic productivity. For example, our collaboration on the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program has created jobs and improved the quality of life in communities across the province. But more needs to be done. That is why our government will continue to join our provincial and territorial partners in calling on the federal government to support infrastructure revitalization by providing $10 billion a year in funding over ten years.

And as we continue to deliver on our government’s plan to build a stronger, more resilient health care system, long-term and sustainable federal funding remains more important than ever. Ontario, along with all other provinces and territories, continues to call for an immediate increase to the Canada Health Transfer from 22 per cent to 35 per cent of provincial-territorial health care costs, and to maintain this contribution level over time with an adequate annual escalator.

And we were encouraged to see the $3.8 billion over eight years for a new Critical Minerals Strategy, which includes a $1.5 billion for infrastructure investment. Our government strongly encourages the federal government to consider the road to the Ring of Fire, which is critical for positioning Canada as an electric and hybrid vehicle manufacturing powerhouse, as an essential project for this new fund. Ontario has stepped up with close to $1 billion for legacy infrastructure to bring prosperity and opportunity to Ontario’s North, and we invite the federal government to join us at the table.

We also applaud the federal government for following Ontario’s lead in addressing housing supply, including cracking down on foreign speculation in the housing market. However, there are no “temporary” solutions to the housing crisis. That is why our government has permanently increased and expanded our Non-Resident Speculation Tax to make it the most comprehensive in the country, and why we have committed to introducing a housing supply action plan every year over the next four years. We encourage the federal government to continue to pursue measures that complement our approach.

Our government has a vision for a stronger Ontario, and a plan to get it done. Ontario will continue to work with the federal government and with all of our provincial and territorial partners to deliver investment, opportunity and growth for today and for future generations.”