Minister Girard also predicts that job creation will slow down in Quebec, after a record annual increase of 169,400 jobs in 2021 (+4.1%).
So far this year, 103,400 jobs have been created, but that number is expected to drop to just 31,000 new jobs next year.
In this context of economic slowdown, the demand for workers will decrease; therefore, Quebec expects a temporary increase in the unemployment rate.
Therefore, the latter should settle at 4.5% in 2022, a historical annual low, before increasing slightly to reach 5.0% in 2023.
Support for the elderly
It is true that the increase in inflation has put pressure on the finances of many households, Minister Girard acknowledged. But at the same time, it has increased state revenue, and this additional revenue will go in large part to protect the purchasing power of Quebecers, he explained.
In addition to recently announced measures, namely a 3% cap on government tax increases and assistance for taxpayers whose income is less than $50,000, Québec is enhancing the refundable tax credit for people age 70 and older.
This tax credit increases from $411 to $2,000 as soon as the 2022 income tax return is filed.
This measure, which will be offered each year, will consume an additional $1.5 billion from the public treasury and some $8 billion over the next five years.
Since the release of its budget last March, the Legault administration claims to have allocated nearly $14 billion to help taxpayers cope with the rising cost of living.
” As part of this economic upgrade, our government has chosen to return to Quebecers, with its anti-inflation shield, the additional revenue generated by inflation. This money is the money of the Quebecers. »
The deficit revised downwards
Despite the clouds hanging over the horizon, the situation remains enviable for Quebec. The government is revising its deficit downward: it should be $5.2 billion in 2022-2023, compared with nearly $6.5 billion in the March 2022 budget forecast.
Minister Girard still envisions a return to a balanced budget for 2027-2028.
Quebec’s gross debt stood at $211 billion as of March 31, 2022, representing 41.8% of GDP.
Recession in sight?
At a press conference, Minister Girard explained that the cumulative effect of the rate hikes imposed by the Bank of Canada has not yet reached the economy. Likewise, faced with this uncertainty, the government of François Legault has developed
an alternate scenario to face a possible recession.
” There is great uncertainty about the economic forecasts. We have made the decision, and this is the first time, to present an alternative scenario in which a recession is looming. »
We will be ready to act if the forecast turns dark.Minister Girard assured.
Liberals wanted tax-free relief
In response to Minister Girard’s budget statement, the official interim opposition leader, Marc Tanguay, criticized the fact that the elderly allowance will be taxable, contrary to what the Quebec Liberal Party (PLQ) had proposed.
In addition, Mr. Tanguay criticizes Mr. Girard for comparing the standard of living of Quebecers to Ontarians in his budget statement. But what about your quality of life? wondered the interim Liberal leader.
Who says quality of life says access to essential state services, he explained. Just think about health, education, childcare services and justice.
In all these sectors there is a shortage of labor, stressed the Liberal deputy, who sees no remedy in this budget update.
that gets hotsays Québec solidaire
Except for the elderly, there is nothing serious to help people in 2023said Haroun Bouazzi, financial spokesman for Québec Solidaire.
Our utilities will probably “eat a slap in the face.”
Maurice-Richard’s MNA particularly regrets that the Coalition for the Future of Québec (CAQ) government has not provided emergency funds to transport companies, including the Société de transport de Montréal (STM).
The PQ appreciates the help provided to the elderly
Parti Québécois (PQ) leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon approves of the Legault government’s decision to provide assistance to the elderly. He also welcomes the fact that we are investing in the fight against gun violence, with $253 million over five years, earmarked for Montreal.
But the PQ’s praise for the economic statement stops there.
There is a total lack of ambition and political will on the issue of oil company superprofits.says Mr. St-Pierre Plamondon, who sees
a theft against the consumer.
The PQ calls on Quebec to tax these profits obtained by the oil companies and reinject the income from this eventual tax into food banks, assistance provided to low-income households or the education sector.
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