The BC government says despite a slowing global economy and high-interest rates, the province’s second-quarter report is forecasting a lower deficit.
According to a media release, the province has updated its financial position to indicate $1.4 billion in revenue which is being driven by improved 2022 personal and corporate income tax results. Which is based on the latest assessment by the Canada Revenue Agency indicating an additional $358 million of expected federal funding for wildlife recovery.
Minister of Finance Katrine Conroy says the government knows times are tough, and people are being squeezed by inflation, but the province will continue to provide support for those in need.
“While other governments cut services people rely on when in tough times, we have built a strong fiscal foundation and will continue to support people,” she says.
The First Quarter Report in September shows how the province’s fiscal plan was impacted with increased spending going to protect communities impacted by the summer’s forest fires. However, the government says despite the increased challenges over the summer BC’s economy remains the best across the country.
Conroy says BC’s economy is gaining traction and continues to grow.
“As BC experiences slower global growth, or actions to build a diverse economy and put people first help bring stability to our economic and fiscal plan,” Conroy says.
According to the report, BC is on track for modest economic growth of one per cent, housing starts are up 11.8 per cent, and employment has grown by 1.4 per cent including a net increase of 15,430 private sector and self-employed jobs.
The province says they are still planning to continue with building the infrastructure communities need including schools, health facilities, housing, and transportation infrastructure at a cost of $11.2 billion this year, which is $1 billion lower than initially forecasted.
The province is still projecting a $5.6 billion deficit this year.