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Wildrose supports CFIB call for emergency debate on economy

EDMONTON, AB (January 8, 2016): With job loss numbers mounting and business confidence at an all-time low, today the Wildrose said it would back the Canadian Federation of Independent Business’ call for an emergency debate on the jobs crisis facing Alberta’s economy, the Wildrose Official Opposition said today.

In the dying days of the fall legislature, Wildrose Leader Brian Jean called for an emergency debate surrounding the social costs of the mounting job losses in Alberta. Today, Stats Canada showed Alberta shed a further 3,900 jobs in December. 2015 also saw a shocking 134 per cent spike in group layoff notices.

"As I said in December, Albertans deserve a full debate and analysis of the economy, current government policies, and what can be done to best support families and businesses suffering from job loss," Jean said. "We need an action plan designed to bring stability back to Alberta’s investment environment and reverse the trend of job losses across Alberta."

Wildrose believes a debate should centre around four key elements:

  • Estimating the impact of global commodity markets;
  • Analyzing the damage of NDP tax increases and dramatic minimum wage increases;
  • Reviewing the impact of climate change and royalty reviews on investor confidence;
  • and, Considering new policies that would attract investment to Alberta and diversify the economy.

There’s speculation the NDP government has received a number of group layoff notices for 2016 already, but there’s no way to know how many, or whether the trend is getting better or worse.

Wildrose Shadow Economic Development Minister Prasad Panda said for Albertans anxious about further job loss in 2016, this debate is timely.

"Right now, many Albertans are feeling that they are facing an NDP government that isn’t acting in their best interests with increased businesses taxes, a $3 billion carbon tax and an ongoing royalty review," Panda said. "We can get through this as a province, but the government needs to give Albertans the tools they need to succeed."