In this first of a two part series on the economic management and fiscal challenges of contemporary governments, COMPAS explores the views of the CEOs and business leaders on the COMPAS business panel about Canada’s economic miracle and Ontario’s fiscal quandary.
In a spirit of generosity, panelists give credit for Canada’s strong economy to all the major players—Chretien and Martin, Stephen Harper, Canada’s banks, and especially federal regulators.
As for Ontario, the overwhelming majority of panelists believe that the province has much to be concerned about as a consequence of potentially higher interest rates and pressures on health spending from a rapidly aging population. By a greater than 2:1 margin, panelists believe that the province cannot risk raising taxes for fear of a loss of business to the west. By a near consensus, they believe that Ontario needs to emulate the private sector options in healthcare offered by Quebec as a way of controlling health spending, the biggest item in the budget.
These are the key findings from this past week’s Internet survey of CEOs and business leaders on the COMPAS panel. The weekly business survey is undertaken for Canadian Business magazine.
Next week’s CEO poll looks at taxing the rich as a way of overcoming the fiscal challenge, notably in the United States.