Ottawa, October 1st – CFA was encouraged to hear that the Federal Government recognizes the growth potential of the agriculture sector in today’s announcement from the Federal Government and the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
Specifically, it was announced that $2 billion would be invested into expanding high-speed broadband, and $1.5 billion to irrigate an additional 700,000 acres across Canada.
The Government announced that the broadband investments will connect more than 750,000 households and businesses in “underserved communities”, which rural areas, farmers and farm businesses are a significant part of.
“Rural broadband has been a long-standing issue for Canada’s farmers and rural communities. With the arrival of COVID-19, many services pivoted to become entirely online, highlighting the fact farmer’s lack of high-speed connectivity puts us at a significant business disadvantage. Rural broadband is not only necessary for today’s farmers to conduct business and take advantage of cutting-edge technology, it is also critical to attracting new, young farmers into the industry. We know younger generations see high-speed connectivity as essential to everyday living and business,” says Mary Robinson, CFA President.
“The Canada Infrastructure Bank will be rolling out these investments over the next 24-36 months. CFA anticipates these investments will help accelerate the government’s promised timeline of connecting all of Canada by 2030,” added Robinson.
The Government’s announcement for funding water and irrigation projects across Canada will also benefit farmers and the environment.
“Increased irrigation can help farmers grow higher value crops and more crops per acre. It also makes water usage more efficient and helps provide protection from droughts. These types of investments will have positive impacts for years to come, helping mitigate the impacts of erratic weather events,” said Robinson.
“The CFA encourages government to undertake these projects swiftly to further unleash Canadian agriculture’s potential, positioning it to drive Canada’s economic post-COVID recovery” concluded Robinson
CFA will work closely with the government to ensure that these infrastructure funds are implemented efficiently and effectively to support farmers and rural communities. These investments will help Canadian agriculture unleash it’s true potential as an economic engine that can help power Canada’s recovery post COVID-19.
Director of Communications and Stakeholder Relations