This article was last updated on April 16, 2022
Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall has criticized Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and claimed that he decided to skip the premiers’ meeting when it became clear it would be more than just a “photo op.” Mr Wall explained during an interview that “let’s be very clear, my understanding is the prime minister wanted to attend this meeting basically for a photo op on the [Canada Pension Plan].”
According to Mr Wall, the premiers invited Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to “have a more substantial discussion” on an issue like health care, “but not a photo op. And so then he decided not to attend.” The premiers are meeting in Whitehorse this week to discuss a range of issues including internal trade and the promised legalization of marijuana. On behalf of Mr Trudeau, his spokesperson Cameron Ahmad alleged that he was unable to attend the premiers’ meeting because of a scheduling conflict. Mr Ahmad mentioned in an email that “however, the prime Minister is very proud that our government is building strong bilateral and multilateral relationships with all provinces and territories,” adding that “that’s why he decided to serve additionally as minister of intergovernmental affairs.”
In a meeting earlier, the federal and provincial finance ministers have agreed to increase CPP contributions to eventually increase the program’s payouts. According to the decision, the increase to contributions will cost employees and employers starting in 2019. The finance ministers had given themselves until the end of 2016, and it was thought to be a win for federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau that they achieved it early.