Overview

Budget 2020 keeps government on track to balance the budget by 2022-23, while investing in Alberta's future. It takes a measured approach that focuses on:

Download the complete Budget 2020 Fiscal Plan (PDF, 6.7 MB)

Making life better for Albertans

Budget 2020 continues to focus on helping those in our communities who are most in need.

Budget 2020 maintains budgets at record levels for health, education and core social services. We’re refocusing how dollars are spent to make sure services get to the people they’re meant to serve.

COVID-19 response: health budget increase

The Government of Alberta has committed $500 million extra this year to respond to the public health crisis and to support front-line health professionals working to keep Albertans safe and healthy. This is in addition to the $20.6 billion allocated for health care in Budget 2020.

For more information, visit COVID-19 info for Albertans.

$20.6 billion to provide health services (including $100 million for mental health and addiction strategy, $40 million for an opioid response, $20 million for palliative care), and an additional $500 million for the COVID-19 public health crisis response.

$8.3 billion for education, an increase of $100 million as school jurisdictions transition to a new funding model by using reserves and own source funding.

$3.9 billion for community and social services with a focus on more sustainable outcomes.

$1.6 billion for children's services, to ensure children, youth and families have the services and supports they need to thrive.

$637 million for seniors benefits and housing services.

Reducing vaping harms

Budget 2020 is making life better for Albertans - and young Albertans - by introducing a tax on vaping devices and liquids to help discourage youth from buying these products.

Living within our means

We remain committed to spending only what we can afford so we can continue providing services now and in the future. Refocused spending will ensure Albertans receive the outcomes they deserve through programs that are effective and sustainable.

Chart 1: Spending compared to others (per capita)
 

Spending compared to others
Source: Amounts for 2008-09 to 2018-19 are based on Statistics Canada data. Amounts for Alberta from 2019-20 onward are based on the amounts presented in the budget. Expenditures for BC, ON, QB from 2018-19 onward were adjusted based on the percentage increase provided in each province's budget.

A blueprint for jobs

Getting Alberta back to work is job one.

As part of A Blueprint for Jobs, we are creating an environment where businesses can thrive and create good jobs with good wages for hard working Albertans — allowing them to contribute to the economy, give back to their communities and pave the way forward for the next generation of Albertans.

With the Job Creation Tax Cut as a foundation, we are building on Alberta's many existing strengths to get Albertans working, revitalize Alberta's economy and continue providing the critical government programs and services Albertans expect.

We will leverage our strengths to support further economic diversification, innovation, business attraction and investment in key sectors. These include: energy, tourism, finance/fintech, forestry, tech, agriculture, and aviation.

We are building on our many existing strengths

The youngest population in Canada.

A skilled workforce.

High levels of private sector investment.

Abundant natural resources.

We are taking immediate and long-term action in 5 areas

Supporting businesses by creating an environment to support a vibrant private sector that will create good jobs with good wages for Albertans.

Freeing job creators from senseless red tape allows businesses to better focus on driving success and government to be more efficient.

Investing in infrastructure like roads, schools and health facilities is critical to our economic success by creating jobs and attracting investors.

Selling Alberta to the world by re-establishing global confidence that we're an attractive and compelling place to invest.

Skills development will build on the talent and enthusiasm of our young workforce by creating more opportunities for them to acquire skills to meet labour market demands.

Alberta's tax advantage

Albertans and Alberta businesses continue to pay less in overall taxes compared to other provinces, with low personal and corporate income taxes, and no sales tax, health premiums or payroll tax.

Today, Alberta has the lowest corporate tax rate in Canada. By 2022, Alberta will have one of the lowest corporate tax rates in North America.

Chart 2: Additional taxes paid by other provinces compared to Alberta (in $ thousands)

 

Alberta's 2020 tax advantage
Source: Alberta Treasury Board and Finance

Job creation tax cut

The Job Creation Tax Cut supports diversification and innovation and leaves investment decisions up to the market - not government.

The corporate tax rate has already been reduced from 12% to 10%. It will continue to go down 1% each year until 2022.

When it reaches 8%, Alberta's corporate tax rate will be 30% lower than the next lowest province and lower than in 44 U.S. states.

Table 2: Our competitive advantage

  Calgary Vancouver
Corporate income tax 10% 12%
Payroll tax None 1.95%
Provincial sales tax None 7%
Average home price (2019) $417,000 $1,002,000
Labour productivity (2018) $78.1 (AB) $53.1 (BC)
Average net rent industrial leasing (2019 Q4) $7.91 $13.15
Source: Treasury Board and Finance, CREA, Statistics Canada

Significant improvement in Alberta's business tax competitiveness

Chart 3: Corporate Income Tax Rates, 2022 (combined federal and state/provincial)

 

Alberta's business tax competitiveness
Source: Treasury Board and Finance

Investing in infrastructure

Budget 2020 continues to recognize that roads, schools and health facilities are critical to economic success.

Budget 2020 introduces a Capital Plan to spur job creation in Alberta, helping many Albertans get back to work. There will be funding in the Capital Plan for new schools, hospital projects, roads and other infrastructure projects.

The 2020 Capital Plan accelerates our already aggressive Capital Plan with a focus on infrastructure that advances jobs and economic growth. New projects worth an estimated $772 million over the next three years will create approximately 3,000 new jobs by 2022.

Chart 4: Budget 2020 Capital Plan

 

Capital plan
Excludes schools, universities, colleges, hospitals (SUCH) sector – self financed investment.

Getting spending under control

Our plan is working.

Budget 2020 addresses Alberta's financial debt while ensuring Albertans can access the programs and services they need. It supports front-line public services by maintaining annual funding to health, education and social services, while making key investments in Alberta's economy to restore investor confidence and attract more job creators to our province.

Alberta's deficit has declined more than expected. With the deficit $1.2 billion lower than projected in Budget 2019, Alberta taxpayers can expect to pay $35 million less in debt servicing costs. This is equivalent to the cost of 135 long-term care beds or a new K-9 school.

Chart 1: Budget 2020 Key Fiscal Metrics (billions of dollars)

Budget 2020 - Key fiscal metrics
Source: Treasury Board and Finance
*Numbers may not add due to rounding

A fair deal for Alberta

Albertans contribute far more to the federal government than they receive back in federal spending. Alberta is seeking a fair deal to address this imbalance.

Alberta’s contribution to Canada

With only 12% of Canada’s population, Alberta has been a major contributor to the country’s economy for decades. Alberta’s ongoing contributions to Canada play a driving role in sustaining the national economy, as well as programs and services all Canadians rely on.

Over the past five years (2014–18), Alberta’s contribution to the federal government has averaged $20 billion per year. What does that represent in federal programs and services?

What does Alberta's $20 billion fiscal contribution represent in federal programs?

About 40% of the Old Age Security Program

About 55% of federal heath transfers to provinces

Over 80% of the Child Benefit Program

Over 100% of the Employment Insurance Program

The Fair Deal Panel

The Fair Deal Panel has heard from more than 7,000 Albertans and is exploring ideas to strengthen our economy, give Alberta a stronger voice and increase provincial power within confederation. The panel held town hall meetings from December 2019 through January 2020 across Alberta in:

  • Airdrie
  • Calgary
  • Edmonton
  • Fort McMurray
  • Fort Saskatchewan
  • Grande Prairie
  • Lethbridge
  • Lloydminster
  • Medicine Hat

The panel will report its findings to the Government of Alberta by March 31, 2020.

Budget documents

Budget 2020 Fiscal Plan (PDF, 6.7 MB)

Budget 2020 Highlights (PDF, 1.7 MB)

More budget information

A summary of Alberta’s Budget 2020 economic forecast and analysis.

Revenue projections from taxes, transfers, investment income and resources.

Budget 2020 invests in the infrastructure families and communities need.

Budget 2020 continues to optimize Alberta’s tax system.