Canada Infrastructure Bank abolished, House Commission tells government

The House of Commons Committee, which is studying the activities of the Bank of Infrastructure Canada (CIB), issued a single recommendation to the government in a report submitted on May 2. Abolish it.

To justify the recommendation Report Quoting witnesses who testified in the course of five meetings held by the Standing Committee on Transportation, Infrastructure and Community during the previous Parliament.

Citing the testimony of Mary Van Buren, President of the Canadian Construction Association, “Most of the discussions throughout this study focused on the issue of CIB efficiency and that the project was not flowing as quickly as expected. Some witnesses expressed concern. ” others.

“”[Van Buren] Considered the state of [infrastructure] “It’s a pretty dire situation right now,” the report said.

Van Buren Review testimony She seems to be working on federal-sponsored infrastructure projects in general, not necessarily just projects linked to the CIB.

The report also cites Heather Whiteside, a professor of political science at the University of Waterloo. He said in March 2021 that CIB was “not very successful” in most of the projects still in the MOU stage.

The CIB was officially established in 2017 to fund infrastructure projects that generate revenue with $ 35 billion in taxpayer funds and to attract private investment. The CIB’s progressive agenda includes a focus on sustainable growth, indigenous infrastructure, and green projects.

In response to this report, CIB spokesman Félix Corriveau said that the royal companies now have “great momentum.”

Corriveau told the Epoch Times that the total capital value of the CIB partnership is $ 20.9 billion for all 28 projects and the CIB’s share will reach $ 7.2 billion. CIB has raised $ 7.6 billion in private funding and $ 6.1 billion from public partners in these projects.

Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) Yves Giroux testified in front of the Commission in March 2021, at which time his office reviewed the CIB, which had 13 projects, most of which. There was no financial commitment.

Of the projects signed, the PBO reported that they were exclusively funded by taxpayers, despite the CIB’s goal of attracting private investment.

The Canadian pension fund is affiliated with the CIB, but Giroux told the Commission that these are not considered private entities as defined by the Government Agency of Statistics Canada.

The Epoch Times sent a request to the CIB for a breakdown of private sector funding invested in the project, but did not immediately respond.

In Spring Market Update 2022, CIB offers the amount invested in various projects, but not the amount invested by partners.

CIB’s largest investment is $ 1.28 billion in Réseauexpress métropolitain (REM), a new automated light metro network in and around Montreal. Its partners are the Quebec Investment Trust Bank, a state and Quebec pension plan manager.

Construction of the REM is nearing completion in some areas and the section will be operational later this year.

The second largest investment is $ 665 million to provide broadband Internet in Ontario, partnered with Federal Innovation Canada.

Parties will participate

All major parties except the Conservatives submitted supplementary views in the Commission report.

“We strongly believe that the CIB is an important tool in the government’s toolkit when it comes to creating smart investments in Canada’s infrastructure,” said the Liberal Party submission, a Commission recommendation to abolish the CIB. Suggests not to pay attention to.

“These investments are important for us to build better. They will create good jobs, grow our economy, create inclusive communities, and tackle climate change.”

Bloc Québécois writes, “There are many good reasons to want to close this useless structure.”

Brock said that infrastructure is overwhelmingly a matter of state and local government, so it makes no sense for governments that do not own infrastructure to come and determine the conditions under which work will take place in the region. I am saying.

The NDP upheld the report’s recommendation to abolish crown corporations, with the CIB’s revenue-generating mission as a primary concern, stating that it could be against the public interest.

“The choice of projects to attract private investment and the inherently profit-driven operation of completed projects are essential to the bank’s privatization agenda and severely limit its ability to serve the public interest.”

Noe Chartier


Noé Charter is a Montreal-based Epoch Times reporter.