EDMONTON — Alberta’s finance minister says COVID-19 will affect the province’s economy for the next couple of years and perhaps beyond, but recent projections are encouraging.
Travis Toews made the comments as he announced the revised budget deficit this year will be $21.3 billion.
That’s almost $3 billion less than projected at the first update in August, but still exponentially larger than the $6.8-billion deficit announced by Toews when he first presented the budget in February.
But Toews says there is hope on the horizon, while cautioning events are still fluid and the path back will be long.
Revenue is expected to reach $41.4 billion, almost $3 billion higher than last quarter due to improved forecasts for resource and gaming revenues, investment income and federal transfers.
More than 70 per cent of the jobs lost in the first wave of COVID-19 have returned, but Toews says the market won’t return to 2019 levels until 2022.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2020.
The Canadian Press