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October 1, 2020
  • Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial governments have spent a combined total of $97 billion more than they promised in their budgets since 2000, a figure set to worsen with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Since 2000, Canada’s senior governments have spent $97 billion – some $2,600 per Canadian – more than they budgeted and raised $161 billion more in revenues – around $4,300 per Canadian.
  • This annual comparison of governments’ budget targets with what they actually ended up spending and raising at year-end shows governments went into the COVID-19 crisis spending far more, and taxing far more heavily, than they would have if they had met their budget promises over the past two decades.
William B.P. Robson
William Robson

Bill Robson took office as CEO of the C.D. Howe Institute in July 2006, after serving as the Institute’s Senior Vice President since 2003 and Director of Research from 2000 to 2003. He has written more than 240 monographs, articles, chapters and books on such subjects as government budgets, pensions, healthcare financing, inflation and currency issues.

Farah Omran
Farah Omran

Farah Omran joined the C.D. Howe Institute in 2017, while completing her Master of Arts in Economics from the University of Toronto. She is now a policy analyst at the institute, working on a wide range of topics, including monetary policy, financial services, and fiscal accountability.