Contrary to the myriad of stories on joblessness in Canada, there is also the increasingly critical problem of labour shortages in the skilled trades. The problem has yet to be dealt with as it should, according to economist Don Drummond—who was asked by provincial and federal ministers to find solutions to the issue five years ago. Called by analysts another looming crisis, the problem has been growing increasingly critical. With tradespeople retiring, not enough youth with the skills to take their place, and previous initiatives showing little or no improvement, some, like Sarah Anson-Cartwright, director of skills policy at the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, hope there is enough awareness now for the skills crisis to be combatted and solved.
On 21 March, the federal government is to present a new budget to Parliament. Finance Minister Jim Flaherty is not expected to announce new large projects, but rather make changes to projects which have existing funds. Instead, he will put forward spending cuts—notably for Environment Canada and the Military—and other plans to control the $26 billion dollar deficit which is meant to be eliminated by 2015.