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As Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland puts the finishing touches to her 2022-23 budget to be unveiled Thursday, she is expected to focus on a report predicting that Canada’s economic growth is poised to be the last among advanced nations for four decades.

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Highlighted recently by the Business Council of BC, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development report paints a grim picture of Canada’s real GDP per capita growth through 2060, largely due to low productivity work.

Productivity is boosted by businesses investing in new technologies, making work more efficient, thereby increasing economic output, a key driver of Canadians’ standard of living.

David Williams, vice-president of policy at the BC Business Council, wrote recently that the OECD report predicts that Canada‘s real GDP per capita growth from 2020 to 2030 will be just 0.7% per year, last among the 38 comparable OECD countries.

Things don’t get much better after that, with the OECD pegging Canada’s per capita growth from 2030 to 2060 at 0.8% per year, again last among OECD members.

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The problem predates the Trudeau government, but it is getting worse.

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Growth in real GDP per capita from 2007 to 2020 – chaired by the Harper Conservative and Trudeau Liberal governments – ranked 26th out of 38 OECD countries, averaging 0.8% per year.

The BC Business Council says the problem is that the Trudeau government’s policies are undermining Canada’s economic performance by focusing on the wrong things, instead of increasing productivity through policies encouraging businesses to invest in technology to make work more efficiently.

These misguided policies include things like excessively expansionary monetary policy for credit, housing, and consumption of durable goods and loose fiscal policy lacking long-term financial anchors.

Given these realities, he says, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet do not appear to be devoting much attention to improving the standard of living of Canadians by crafting policies designed to increase economic growth through higher productivity. increased.

“The political class appears to have lost interest in efforts to increase worker productivity and real wage growth through higher business investment per worker, faster adoption of innovation, and the capacity of the ‘medium business to operate at scale (the ability to manage an increasing amount of work in a cost-effective way)’, Williams said.