Op-Eds

COVID-19 has fundamentally changed lives across Canada. This change may be most pronounced in Canada’s major cities. Many of the things that make life in our cities so vibrant—great restaurants, entertainment, or going to the office to learn from great colleagues—have vanished. Post-pandemic, as more Canadians work from home, transit operators will face the challenge of bringing us back together to enjoy urban life while facing a gloomy financial outlook. There are many benefits of urban living, such as tapping a large job and employee market, having access to a wide range of services and infrastructure, and learning from others face-to-face. Public transit is the essential component that enables the benefits of people coming together....
Policy decisions coming soon from the CRTC, the federal telecommunications regulator, are going to shape major investment decisions with critical impacts on our economy. Canadian governments need to get the right balance between investment and sustainable competition. Failure to do so will jeopardize efforts to get Canadian communities digitally connected and hence our ability as a nation to participate in an increasingly digital world economy. The next generation of technology investment — “5G” — is critical to the economy’s future. For example, it will be key to commercializing innovations in precision agriculture. It will enable rural economic development, such as automated hauling at mine sites, and underpin further developments in...
Je ne cherche pas à vous vendre le pont Samuel-De Champlain, croyez-moi ! Seulement à vous convaincre qu’il est opportun de considérer le financement des infrastructures publiques par les caisses de retraite, qui ont besoin de ces actifs pour assurer le paiement de nos rentes. Il y a quelques jours, Mark Machin, le patron d’Investissements RPC, qui gère les 457 milliards de dollars du Régime de pension du Canada, le grand frère du Régime des rentes du Québec, lui géré par la Caisse de dépôt, a suggéré que les gouvernements à court d’argent devraient vendre les aéroports, les routes à péage, les sociétés de services public et autres infrastructures publiques. « Il y a tellement de capital qui court après les...
Home prices have skyrocketed in places such as Vancouver and Toronto in the past decade. These cities have some of the highest charges and most restrictive rules on construction. The evidence from around the world shows that government policies that limit supply and increase the cost of construction are among the key causes of higher prices. It is time governments take more steps to reduce these costs. Homebuyers in Canadian cities face a multitude of taxes and charges that increase the cost of buying a home. Restrictions on housing supply and extra costs hinder the efficiency of the housing market. Recent research has found a persistent gap between the cost of building new homes and their market price in major Canadian cities...
In the past weeks, Canada’s economy has begun to reopen. This restart is tentative and faces great uncertainty. Nonetheless, Canada’s governments must now turn to planning for our economic recovery. The recovery plans should focus on laying foundations for Canadian prosperity in decades to come. Well-targeted infrastructure investments should be the centrepiece. Notwithstanding the risk of a second wave for the pandemic, all indications are for a long, hard recovery rather than any “V-shaped” bounceback. Canada’s economy will likely face a period of weak demand from consumers and for our major exports, as well as depressed capital spending by private business. Managing the crisis required unprecedented outlays by the federal...