Liberal MP urges Harper government to reveal its updated budgetary forecast

The Liberal party is calling on the federal government to share its latest budgetary projections with the public after a new analysis revealed the country is on course for a deficit in 2015-16.

OTTAWA — The Liberal party is calling on the federal government to share its latest budgetary projections with the public after a new analysis revealed the country is on course for a deficit in 2015-16.

The parliamentary budget office produced an updated fiscal outlook this week that predicts Canada will run a $1-billion shortfall.

The calculations were based on a downgraded Bank of Canada forecast and raised doubts about the governing Conservatives’ long-held vow to achieve an election-year surplus.

Liberal finance critic Scott Brison has sent a letter to Finance Minister Joe Oliver urging him to unveil his department’s updated forecast before a parliamentary committee following the central bank’s gloomier prediction.

Oliver insisted earlier this week that the Harper government remains on track to produce a budgetary surplus this year — despite the economy’s struggles following the oil-price slide.

The Conservative government tabled a budget in April that projected a $1.4-billion surplus for 2015-16.

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