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Investments in priorities continue as provincial economy supports first-quarter results

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by ahnationtalk on August 28, 2023106 Views

28 August 2023

FREDERICTON (GNB) – With the provincial economy maintaining a strong momentum, the provincial government is continuing to invest in key priority areas, including housing, education, and employment and training support.

“The first-quarter financial results for the 2023-24 fiscal year demonstrate the continued strength that the province’s economy has shown for several months,” said Finance and Treasury Board Minister Ernie Steeves. “Our current position allows us the flexibility to make nimble decisions, and invest in areas with the greatest need, all while considering the long-term financial health of the province in every decision we make.”

Investments include:

  • The New Brunswick Housing Strategy: Housing for All, which focuses on preventing residents from becoming unhoused by investing $500 million over three years, in current and previously announced projects.
  • $33.3 million to reflect the impact of a growing population on the education system, including investments in facilities, more teachers and an increase in instructional materials.
  • A development agreement with Neqotkuk (Tobique First Nation) that will provide more than $22 million over five years to support housing and road repair.
  • A $2.1-million investment for better diabetes management, including making insulin pump devices and related supplies more available and affordable for those living with Type 1 diabetes.
  • $2.5 million over a six-year period to support vulnerable children and their families through Bee Me Kidz.
  • $47 million in 2023-24 to support projects under the Climate Change Action Fund.

Projections for the 2023-24 fiscal year show a surplus of $199.6 million. Steeves said that, while these results are encouraging, he is not seeing the same early signs of windfalls that were seen in the last few years and is treating the surplus cautiously.

“Discussions are ongoing about how we can continue to invest in priorities, all while maintaining a balanced approach to ensure the province’s long-term sustainability,” he said.

Revenue is projected to be $151.3 million higher than budgeted, while total expenses are projected to be lower than budgeted by $8.1 million.

Net debt is decreasing and is projected at $11.7 billion for this fiscal year. New Brunswick currently has the lowest projected net debt per capita east of Saskatchewan.

The department projects real GDP growth of one per cent in 2023, comparable to the average among private sector forecasts of 1.2 per cent.

The first-quarter results are available online.


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