Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said the budget he introduced last week will create jobs and long-term prosperity. Speaking at the Vancouver Board of Trade on Wednesday, Flaherty said measures in the budget will help provinces like B.C. realize the potential of their natural resources.
“Much like Canada as a whole, this province is blessed with an abundance of natural resources, an asset that will increasingly contribute to the prosperity of all Canadians. Economic Action Plan 2012 will make new investments to improve regulatory reviews, streamline environmental assessments, and strengthen pipeline and marine safety,” he said.
The budget outlines plans to overhaul how resource projects are reviewed to accelerate the process while reducing overlapping requirements. The government says that process will accelerate reviews and attract investors now scared off by unpredictable approval processes that can take several years. Critics of the changes are concerned environmental protection will be sacrificed.