Canada has recently introduced its Budget 2023 projecting a deficit of $40.1 billion in 2023-24, and the spending plan will cost $490.5 billion. In an exclusive interview with Y Media Group Editor and CEO Yudhvir Jaswal, Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Diversity, Inclusion and Youth of Canada, said, “This year’s budget is about making life more affordable for Canadians. It is about building stronger public health and dental care, growing a greener economy, helping create more jobs and building on our progress. Our government is providing grocery rebates to help people pay for groceries. We are investing significant amounts of money to strengthen our universal public health care system and rolling out a comprehensive Canadian dental care plan for millions of Canadians.”
During the interview with Y Media, Minister Hussen focused on how Budget 2023 is delivering on its promises of building homes and increasing employment. He added, “We are providing relief to mortgage holders by providing more flexibility and issuing guidelines for banks and financial institutions. Starting April 4, the $40,000 First time home savings account and first-time homebuyer student account will be implemented.”
He explained to Y Media’s audience that a tax-free First Homes Savings Account (FHSA) is available to help Canadians buy their first home. The account will allow potential homebuyers to save up to 15 years once they open an account, with an annual $8,000 deposit cap and a lifetime contribution limit of $40,000. When asked how the government is helping Canadians save with the fund, Hussen pointed to the Canada Child Benefit, eliminating interest payments on student loans and the Canada Workers Benefit as examples.
When Yudhvir Jaswal asked how someone could purchase some residential properties being a work permit holder, Minister Hussen said Canada has made amendments to the foreign homebuyers ban. “These amendments will allow newcomers to put down roots in Canada through home ownership and businesses to create jobs and build homes by adding to the housing supply in Canadian cities.”
When asked how Canada will address housing shortage demands due to increasing immigration, Minister Hussen said, “There’s a labour shortage and skill shortage in the housing sector. Canada needs to utilize innovation to allow people to come in so that they can help us build more homes for Canadians.”
Yudhvir Jaswal asked Minister Hussen how the Canadian government is planning to work with provincial and municipal counterparts to boost the housing supply. To this, Minister replied we have introduced the Housing Accelerator fund designed to speed up home building. “(It’s) meant to incentivize the building of additional housing supply. Initially, 100,000 additional housing units, and then through system changes and removal of barriers that slow down the approval and delivery of housing, we want to set up Canada to be in a position to double the number of new homes built in the next 10 years.”
When asked what the government is doing to tackle rising hate crimes across Canada, the Minister of Diversity, Inclusion and Youth of Canada, said, Canada combats hate in all its forms. Budget, 2023 contains additional investments of $35 million toward combating racism. Fighting against hate crime is a top priority for our government, including combating online health.
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