Conversations That Matter

David Dodge: Can the Canadian Economy Keep Trading Above Its Weight?

January 9, 2018

Canada has a 570-billion-dollar infrastructure deficit. Yes, that's right, a whopping 570-billion dollars. So what? Who cares?

Well, that infrastructure is made up of roads, bridges, tunnels, terminals, power generation plants, hospitals, schools and more related to our ability to care for and educate people as well as move products. Without them, our ability to get our products to market diminishes and we restrict our ability to remain an active participant in the global economy.

Canada is, after all, a small economy trading well above its weight.

We’ve been able to maintain that position because we could get our products to market, a market that was just on the other side of the 49th parallel.

The world is changing, trade agreements are in flux or nixed before they start. The global market is rapidly swinging towards Southeast Asia. If we can’t get our products to that market we run the risk of a stagnant economy at best, a sinking one at worst.

What does that mean for the Canadian economy in 2018 and beyond? We asked former Bank of Canada Governor David Dodge to join us for a Conversation That Matters about his positive short-term forecast, and his concerns over the long term.