(Adds spokesman comment, background)
TORONTO Oct 19 A Canadian government advisory
group this week will recommend the creation of an infrastructure
bank and urge increased immigration to stoke economic growth,
the Globe and Mail reported on Wednesday.
Citing unnamed sources, it said Finance Minister Bill
Morneau's Advisory Council on Economic Growth will call for a 50
percent boost in immigration to 450,000 people annually over
five years as well as easing the entry of highly skilled and
A spokesman for the finance minister declined to comment.
Other recommendations include the creation of a new
department to entice foreign direct investment and the
establishment of an infrastructure bank, the report said.
The proposed bank would be "arms length" from the
government, the article said.
The Liberal government, which was elected a year ago on a
plan to spend more to revive the economy, included in its
platform a plan to establish an infrastructure bank that would
provide loan guarantees and small capital contributions to
provinces and municipalities to build infrastructure projects.
Earlier this year, Reuters reported the government was
talking to pension funds about investing in billions of dollars
worth of infrastructure projects.
The 14-member advisory group includes venture capitalists,
institutional investors, business executives and academics. It
will deliver the recommendations to Morneau on Thursday, the
The government will provide an economic and fiscal update
this fall. Morneau is expected to announce plans to act on at
least one of the group's recommendations in his update, the
(Reporting by Jeffrey Hodgson; additional reporting by Leah
Schnurr in Ottawa; editing by Diane Craft)