The Canadian government, led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, has announced plans to eliminate the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on the construction of new rental apartment buildings. This decision is expected to be officially announced by Trudeau on Thursday. The removal of the GST is aimed at lowering the cost of labor and materials for homebuilders, ultimately contributing to increased affordability in the housing market.
The announcement comes as part of a broader affordability plan outlined by Trudeau and his team, which includes measures to address concerns related to the cost of living. Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, Housing Minister Sean Fraser, and Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne will join Trudeau in making the announcement in London, Ontario.
The discussions during the three-day retreat, attended by 158 Liberal Members of Parliament (MPs), have primarily focused on affordability issues and how the party can effectively communicate their efforts to address these concerns. Climate change has also been a prominent topic of discussion among MPs, highlighting the government’s commitment to addressing environmental challenges.
The government’s decision to remove the GST on construction aligns with their efforts to stabilize the housing market amid rising costs and interest rates. While the Liberals are taking steps to address these issues, they emphasize the need for cooperation from the provinces to effectively tackle affordability concerns.
This move by the Canadian government aims to bolster support for the Liberal Party, which has faced declining poll numbers. By addressing affordability and housing concerns, Trudeau and his team hope to regain public confidence in their ability to govern.
Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly dismissed suggestions that the retreat in London was a response to negative poll numbers, emphasizing that the government’s focus remains on finding solutions to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.
– Lauren Vanderdeen, Burnaby Now
– Dylan Robertson, The Canadian Press