April 2, 2020

Episode #06: An Expert Look at the COVID-19 Relief Measures with Serge Dupont

There is no denying that what we are experiencing across the globe is unprecedented. Health systems have been shocked. Economies have taken a hit. Governments have responded with various measures to provide relief and ensure business continuity.

Over the past several weeks, the federal and provincial governments have announced a variety of measures to provide relief, support and protection for Canadians, businesses and the economy overall.

However, some have raised concerns about the speed and scale of the federal government’s response, saying it’s been timid, incremental and piecemeal. However, in recent days, we’ve seen the federal government get progressively bolder and bigger. Today, we are looking at a stimulus package that is approaching $100 billion.

Serge Dupont is a Senior Advisor at Bennett Jones and has previously served in the federal government in various roles including Deputy Clerk of the Privy Council and Deputy Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources Canada, and Assistant Deputy Minister of Finance, among other. He joins us to break down the relief measures the federal government has announced to date, what gaps exist and what the economic rebuild looks like.

In This Episode:

  • Assessing the progressive speed and scale of the federal government’s economic and financial response to COVID-19, and how Canada compares to nations around the world
  • Gaps in relief measures for other sectors and industries such as energy and airlines and appropriate measures to close those gaps
  • Role the private sector has in helping to flatten the curve, including workforce management, building supply and pivoting business models to provide goods and services needed
  • What we can expect in the coming weeks and months as both the health and economic situation evolves
  • What the economic and financial rebuild looks like after the COVID-19 crisis has passed, including impacts on the global economy

Key Takeaways:

  • With the basic response architecture in place, the main priority is to get the public health situation under control, and then get people back to work and get the economy moving again
  • Canadians need stability right now, and the focus should be on delivering these new measures well

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