Vladimir Putin

Mazankowski, The Hon. Don

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A joint meeting of The Empire Club of Canada and The Canadian Club of Toronto. Dialogue and debate prior to the latest federal budget. Concerns and sympathy expressed for those hurting. Concern for the lack of confidence at both the consumer and the business level. Concern for the social safety net. Participation by the disabled in the debate. Suggestions for the federal government. Highlights of steps taken in the budget to "instil some hope, a new sense of direction, to restore consumer and business confidence in Canada's prospects for growth and increased prosperity and competitiveness." How to transform a resource-based economy to a more value added and information based economy. How these actions coincide with a continuing commitment towards deficit reduction. A reduction in the tax burden. A realistic approach to the budget. A detailed description of the budget follows, with analysis and justification. The goals of progress against the deficit and the debt, an increase in capacity to cut taxes further, and to make strategic investments in the economic and social development of Canada.