Housing Minister Sean Fraser says he will make an announcement with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau later Wednesday that is going to be the start of a series of measures to get more homes built.
“Today is going to be the first time that we’ve done something like this in Canada. And I don’t want to spoil the news we’re going to hear a little later on,” Fraser told reporters at the Liberal caucus retreat in London, Ont., on Wednesday.
Fraser and the prime minister are expected to hold a press conference at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Amid rising interest rates, housing is expected to be the main issue facing parliamentarians as they return to Ottawa on Monday.
Pierre Poilievre and the Conservatives saw a major surge in support according to several pollsters this summer. Much of this has been attributed to a focus on housing and the cost of living crisis in Conservative messaging.
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Fraser said there is no single, silver bullet solution to the current housing crisis but added it will take collaboration with all levels of government, the non-profit and private sectors.
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“We’re going to need to advance measures that are going to help change the financial equation for builders who are dealing with a lot of projects that are actually approved but then put on pause because of a higher interest rate environment,” Fraser said.
“And by investing in innovation like building homes and factories so we can actually be more productive with the assets that we have,” he continued.
The minister added building a larger home construction workforce is also a priority, with training more Canadians in building trades and recruiting immigrants with relevant skills.
With Liberal popularity on the decline, Fraser said he doesn’t believe it’s too late to change course on housing.
“They should expect to see a renewed focus that’s looking to build homes not just for low-income Canadians in affordable housing projects, but across the housing spectrum to make sure we’re doing that for middle-class folks,” Fraser said.
More to come.
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