Province’s ‘Historic’ Deficit Shrinks By $2.8B in Last Quarter

The province’s deficit is shrinking by nearly $3 billion.

That’s according to the provincial government which gave its latest quarterly update on Tuesday.

Back in August, the GoA forecasted a ‘historic‘ deficit of $24.2 billion, an increase of $16.8 billion from earlier estimates, mainly due to a steep decline in revenue.

However, just three months later and the province is projecting a $21.3 billion deficit for the 2020-21 year – a drop of $2.8 billion.

“Alberta was the first province to introduce an economic recovery plan in response to COVID-19, and we will also be the first to introduce a comprehensive plan to bring Alberta back to prosperity,” said Travis Toews, President of Treasury Board and Minister of Finance.

“The foundation of the next provincial budget will be to bring spending in line with other jurisdictions, keep the net debt-to-GDP ratio well below 30 per cent, and have a plan for balancing the budget as we get through the pandemic and there is more economic certainty.”

The GoA credits the rise in revenue and efforts to hold the line on spending as the main reason for the financial improvement.

Expenses, which doesn’t include COVID-19 measures, have decreased by $156 million from the 2020 budget.

However, expenses are up from the previous quarter as the GoA spent funds on health care, personal protective equipment, financial supports to Albertans and businesses, municipal grants, and more.

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