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Canada Infrastructure Bank becomes a political issue in upcoming federal election

By David Crane       

The federal government has committed $35-billion over 11 years to help lever a major commitment of private capital for new infrastructure at a time when governments are hard-pressed to meet Canada’s massive new infrastructure needs out of public funding alone. Yet both the Conservatives and the NDP have said they would abolish the bank should either form the next government.

Infrastructure and Communities Minister François-Philippe Champagne is the federal minister responsible for the Canada Infrastructure Bank. The CIB is currently looking at 25 possible new projects—in public transit, trade and transport, green infrastructure and broadband—and expects to allocate nearly $17-billion over the next five years support new infrastructure projects, with much more in private capital, so a much larger pool of capital will be available to accelerate much-needed new infrastructure in all parts of Canada. Hard to see why the Conservatives or NDP would be opposed if the country benefits. Closing the infrastructure gap will mean a stronger economy and higher quality of life, writes David Crane. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

TORONTO—It has become another political issue in the upcoming federal election. This is the Canada Infrastructure Bank, a federal Crown corporation established in 2017 to expand the pace of investment in new infrastructure by making it more attractive for the private sector to help finance major new projects such as public transit, highways, ports, water systems and broadband networks.

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