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Canadians in every province will pay more than $1,750 per person in 2023-24 on government interest costs amounting to $81.8 billion


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From the Fraser Institute

By Jake Fuss and Grady Munro

Canadians in every province will pay more than $1,750 per person in 2023/24 on government interest costs, finds a new study published by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan Canadian public policy think-tank.

“Interest must be paid on government debt, and the more money governments spend on interest payments the less money is available for the programs and services that matter to Canadians,” said Jake Fuss, director of fiscal studies at the Fraser Institute and author of Federal and Provincial Debt Interest Costs for Canadians, 2024 edition.

The study finds that taxpayers across Canada will pay a total of $81.8 billion on interest payments for the federal and provincial debts this year alone. The federal government will spend $46.5 billion on debt servicing charges in 2023/24, which is more than the government expects to spend on childcare benefits ($31.2 billion) and almost as much as the Canada Health Transfer ($49.4 billion).

Nationally, Newfoundland and Labrador’s combined federal and provincial interest costs is the highest in the country at $3,225 per person. Manitoba is the next highest at $2,728 per person.

Meanwhile, total expenditures on interest costs for Albertans ($8.6 billion) and Ontarians ($31.5 billion) are nearly equivalent to expected spending on K-12 education in their respective provinces this year.

“Even before the COVID-19 pandemic and recession, governments across Canada and in Ottawa were racking up large debts, and this debt imposes real costs on Canadian taxpayers in the form of interest payments,” said Fuss. “Interest payments across the country are substantial, and that takes money away from other important priorities.”

  • In recent years, deficit spending and growing government debt have become a trend for many Canadian governments. Like households, governments are required to pay interest on their debt.
  • In aggregate, the provinces and federal government are expected to spend $81.8 billion on interest payments in 2023/24.
  • Residents in Newfoundland & Labrador face by far the highest combined federal-provincial interest payments per person ($3,225). Manitoba is the next highest at $2,728 per person.
  • The federal government will spend $46.5 billion on debt servicing charges in 2023/24, which is nearly what the government expects to spend on the Canada Health Transfer ($49.4 billion), and significantly more than it expects to spend on childcare benefits ($31.2 billion).
  • Combined federal-provincial interest costs in Ontario ($31.5 billion), Quebec ($20.3 billion), and Alberta ($8.6 billion) are nearly as much, or more than, what these provinces will spend on K-12 education in 2023/24.
  • Meanwhile, combined federal-provincial interest costs for British Columbians ($9.6 billion) are higher than what the province expects to spend on its social services this year.

More from this study


The Fraser Institute is an independent Canadian public policy research and educational organization with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal and ties to a global network of think-tanks in 87 countries. Its mission is to improve the quality of life for Canadians, their families and future generations by studying, measuring and broadly communicating the effects of government policies, entrepreneurship and choice on their well-being. To protect the Institute’s independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit


Musk: X to sue groups that conspire to boycott conservative news sites

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From The Center Square

“That system guarantees that advertising dollars flow only to left-leaning media brands.”

Tesla founder and X owner Elon Musk said Thursday he plans to file a lawsuit against a collaboration of people and organizations that work to prevent advertising dollars from going to conservative news media brands.

Musk announced his intention on X while sharing video of Daily Wire co-founder Ben Shapiro’s Congressional testimony on the topic from Wednesday.

“Having seen the evidence unearthed today by Congress, 𝕏 has no choice but to file suit against the perpetrators and collaborators in the advertising boycott racket,” Musk wrote. “Hopefully, some states will consider criminal prosecution.”

At Wednesday’s House Judiciary Committee hearing on “Collusion in the Global Alliance for Responsible Media,” Shapiro told lawmakers that legacy media and their political allies conspire with online advertising gatekeepers to paint conservative news organizations as “dangerous,” limiting their opportunity to receive advertising revenue.

“There is in fact an internal pressure system created by Democratic legislators, this White House, legacy media, advertisers and pseudo-objective brand safety organizations,” Shapiro testified. “That system guarantees that advertising dollars flow only to left-leaning media brands.”

Shapiro identified the Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) as one of those gatekeepers of online advertising revenue.

“In reality, GARM acts as a cartel. Its members account for 90% of ad spending in the United States, almost a trillion dollars,” he testified. “In other words, if you’re not getting ad dollars from GARM members, it’s nearly impossible to run an ad-based business. And if you’re not following their preferred political narratives … you will not be deemed brand safe. Your business will be throttled.”

​Dan McCaleb is the executive editor of The Center Square. He welcomes your comments. Contact Dan at [email protected].

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Artificial Intelligence

Elon Musk is building the ‘most powerful Artificial Intelligence training cluster in the world’

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News release from The Deep View

Elon Musk’s xAI has ended talks with Oracle to rent more specialized Nvidia chips — in what could have been a $10 billion deal — according to The Information.
Musk is instead buying the chips himself, all to begin putting together his planned “gigafactory of compute.”
The details: Musk confirmed in a post on Twitter that xAI is now working to build the “gigafactory” internally.
  • Musk explained that the reason behind the shift is “that our fundamental competitiveness depends on being faster than any other AI company. This is the only way to catch up.”
  • “xAI is building the 100k H100 system itself for fastest time to completion,” he said. “Aiming to begin training later this month. It will be the most powerful training cluster in the world by a large margin.”
xAI isn’t the only one trying to build a supercomputer; Microsoft and OpenAI, also according to The Information, have been working on plans for a $100 billion supercomputer nicknamed “Stargate.”
Why it matters: The industry is keen to pour more and more resources into the generation of abstractly more powerful AI models, and VC investments into AI companies, as we noted yesterday, are growing.
But at the same time, concerns about revenue and return on investment are growing as well, with a growing number of analysts gaining confidence in the idea that we are in a bubble of high costs and low returns, something that could be compounded by multi-billion-dollar supercomputers.
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