Canada to spend billions in pandemic recovery

Coronavirus

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks at a bi-weekly news conference outside Rideau cottage on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, Ontario, Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press via AP)

TORONTO (AP) — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government is vowing to spend tens of billions more dollars to help the country recover from the pandemic.

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland says the country is facing its most severe challenge since the second World War, the worst economic shock since the Great Depression and the worse health crisis since the Spanish flu over a century ago.

The cost to date has the federal deficit reaching a record $294 billion this year, but the government says it could close in on $308 billion if widespread lockdowns return in the coming weeks. Toronto, Canada’s largest city, is on lockdown.

The government’s fall economic update proposes to send extra child-benefit payments to families next year. The government is proposing $19 billion in new spending.

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