Alberta contributes $240B to Canada in transfer payments last 11 years, takes nothing

Works out to about $5,000 a year each for Alberta taxpayers

In the last 11 years, Alberta has paid almost $240 billion to the rest of Canada in transfer payments – about $5,000 a year for Alberta taxpayers, according to Statistics Canada.

The next two largest contributors to transfer payments is B.C. and Ontario but Alberta still pays one and a half more than those two provinces pay – combined. Ontario paid $97.9 billion and B.C. paid $54.6 billion.

“Albertans have been working for Ottawa for too long, it’s time for Ottawa to start working for us,” said Premier Jason Kenney at the “What’s Next?” conference in Red Deer last week.

Other provinces, such as Quebec, get more back in federal programs and transfers than they give in taxes. From 2007-18 Quebec’s was a net negative contributor of minus $171.3 billion. Statistics Canada numbers also reveal that Quebec has benefitted the most from the equalization program, receiving $107.5 billion.

Transfer payments redistribute federal tax dollars to provinces with less money so all Canadians have comparable public services at comparable taxation levels.

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Premier Kenney announced the launch of the Fair Deal Panel to consult Albertans on how best to define and to secure a fair deal for Alberta. The panel will also look at how best to advance the province’s vital economic interests, such as the construction of energy pipelines.

In addition, how much money Alberta contributes to the rest of Canada will be examined by the panel.

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Summary of positive contributions over the last 11 years:

Alberta – $239.847 billion paid out. Equalization payments received – none.

B.C. – $54.7 billion paid out. Equalization payments received – $365 million

Ontario – $97.914 billion paid out. Equalization payments received – $18.527 billion.

Summary of negative contributions over the last 11 years:

Quebec – Total of  -$171.3 billion. Equalization payments received $107.6 billion.

Saskatchewan – Total paid out -$1.1 billion. Equalization received $232 million.

Manitoba – Total of -$52.6 billion. Equalization payments received $22.9 billion.

Nova Scotia – Total of -$76.7 billion. Equalization payments received $19.9 billion.

New Brunswick – Total of -$53.6 billion. Equalization payments received $20 billion.

Prince Edward Island – Total paid out -$13.9 billion. Equalization received $4.2 billion.

Newfoundland and Labrador – Total paid out -$20.3 billion. Equalization payments received $689 million.

-george@albertapressleader.ca

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