The federal government is already making plans for major public investments to restart the Canadian economy once the dust settles on the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, the government is looking at rapidly investing up to $180 billion in infrastructure to create jobs and rebuild communities. But CUPE is concerned about comments made by federal Infrastructure Minister Catherine McKenna last week that suggest the government will ramp up the use of public-private partnerships (P3s) through the Canada Infrastructure Bank as part of our economic recovery.
CUPE National President Mark Hancock says we should be investing in public infrastructure and services - not going further down the failed path of for-profit infrastructure arrangements. He shared our union’s view in a letter published this morning in the Globe and Mail.
Check out Mark’s letter below, and get the latest on the Liberal bank of privatization at cupe.ca/not-for-sale.
A rapid, targeted response to reboot the economy will be essential in the aftermath of COVID-19. As president of Canada’s largest union, I support the federal government’s plan to ramp up major infrastructure spending in the coming months to create good jobs and rebuild communities. However, we strongly disagree with Federal Infrastructure Minister Catherine McKenna that the Canada Infrastructure Bank can or should drive our post-pandemic recovery by soliciting more public-private partnerships.
Study after study shows these for-profit infrastructure arrangements can lead to high costs for the public. The global trend – after years of failed experiences – is to move away from these arrangements and instead invest in fully public infrastructure and services. The CIB should provide grants and low-cost loans to municipalities for fully public projects.
Many industries will desperately need government support to get back on their feet when this is all over. Investment firms shouldn’t be one of them.
You can read the original article here. (English only)