October 24, 2019

Provincial budget sets out pathway to competitiveness

alberta budget

ALBERTA—A strong and prosperous Alberta requires a stable and sustained partnership between government, business, and people. The Provincial Government has pledged to work with industry and Albertans to create a strong vision for Alberta’s economic future and enhance the long-term shared prosperity of Albertans. Considering the goal of shared prosperity—economic and social—today’s provincial budget is largely on track towards competitiveness and long-term prosperity.

Summary Points:

  • Budget forges a path to a balanced budget and fiscal sustainability
  • Focus on competitiveness is critical to meaningful jobs and our economic future
  • Commitments to innovation are essential, and gaps exist

“The way to create prosperity for Albertans is through thriving business and growing jobs. This budget shows a plan firmly on this trajectory,” says Adam Legge, President of the Business Council of Alberta “It’s underpinned by the kind of sound economic policy that businesses often advocate for, but seldom see,” says Legge.

A path to balance

The path to fiscal balance is in the long-term interest of Albertans. The budget reflects a strong commitment to fiscal sustainability, based on spending restraint over four years, combined with economic growth and increasing government revenues.

“Balanced fiscal policy is in the interests of Albertans and job creators,” says Legge.  We are encouraged to see a balanced fiscal profile, focused on sensible spending and delivering key provincial programs in an efficient and innovative way,” says Legge. “This budget begins to move us towards greater spending balance and efficiency as outlined in the MacKinnon report while generally still providing the services needed by Albertans.”

Creating a model business climate

“We are encouraged to see the budget reflect a significant commitment to enhancing the competitiveness and investment attractiveness of Alberta—particularly through the Job Creation Tax Cut and Accelerated Capital Cost allowance, says Legge. “We are particularly pleased to see movement to reduce regulatory burden, help businesses accelerate long-term growth, encourage investment in their own businesses, and revive Alberta’s investment attractiveness in a global market.”

Overall, this budget shows a path to greater shared prosperity for Albertans in many areas—it enables future generations of Albertans to be saddled with less debt, protects the vulnerable, and enhances our competitiveness. In addition, we are focused on working with the Provincial Government on a variety of initiatives that will help re-ignite the economy, restore our reputation, and ultimately make life better for Albertans.

Building the future of Alberta

Alberta is a place of innovation and ingenuity. It is encouraging to see commitments to innovation and investment in our economy. Alberta will need to do more to be the most attractive province for innovation to occur. This segment of our economy drives efficiency and value in many others and needs intentional support.

“We advocate for building our future, on purpose. Alberta has a fantastic opportunity to be a leader in the new economy,” says Legge. “Supporting Alberta’s world-class Artificial Intelligence capacity is a big part of this. However, cancelling the Alberta Investor Tax Credit without developing an alternative means of attracting innovators and investment creates a gap and puts Alberta at risk of losing out on meaningful and long-term economic growth.”

Additionally, Alberta needs to ensure we create an environment of business-driven innovation, future-proof companies and a skill development approach that enables all Albertans to pursue life-long learning in whatever role they wish.


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