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Canada Only half of Liberal’s planned infrastructure spending set aside for projects: PBO

A new report from Parliament’s spending watchdog says only half of the $14.4 billion set aside for the first phase of the federal Liberal government’s infrastructure plan has been set aside for projects.

In a new report, the parliamentary budget office says 10,052 projects have been approved for funding since 2016, with a combined cost to federal coffers of $7.2 billion.

That still leaves $7.2 billion to be earmarked for projects that the Liberals had hoped would be underway by now.

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The Liberals unveiled the first phase of spending in their budget in 2016, when they predicted resultant economic growth of 0.9 per cent in fiscal year 2016-17 and 1.4 per cent in the following 12-month period, which ends Saturday.

The parliamentary budget office estimates spending to date has increased the economy by 0.1 per cent in each fiscal year, and added between 9,600 and 11,100 jobs over the last 12 months.

The watchdog warns that slower-than-planned infrastructure spending could have implications for the budgetary balance sheet and the economy as a whole.

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