Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made a controversial decision to suspend Parliament until September 23, 2020. However, he promised to return with a government plan during the Throne Speech. When the new session of Parliament opened last week, Trudeau unveiled a three-pillar economic recovery plan.
Governor-General and former astronaut Julie Payette, as the Queen’s representative in Canada, read the 55-minute speech drafted by Trudeau’s government. A notable declaration is that the government would “trust science to lead the fight until a safe and effective vaccine becomes available.”
Economic recovery plan
Health spending is the first pillar of the economic recovery plan as Trudeau promises to save lives. The strategy is to boost funding in long-term care for seniors and support for daycare centres and schools.
Expect the creation of a national daycare and national subsidized drug programs. Canada will also spend money on vaccines, COVID-19 testing, and support provincial governments in containing the resurgence and outbreaks of coronavirus,
The Trudeau administration pledges to provide financial support to people and businesses for as long as it takes. This second pillar also focuses on shifting displaced Canadian workers back into the workforce. No one should be struggling economically due to the pandemic.
For the third pillar, economic recovery and reconstruction efforts are the main thrusts. Included in the to-do list of Trudeau is to be environmentally focused by fostering green investments. The plan is to exceed Canada’s 2030 climate goal and pass a new law to mandate net-zero emissions by 2050.
Not lost in the speech is bolstering support systems for the most vulnerable, such as low income women and minorities. The government will also aim for national unity by fighting racism and discrimination while promoting equality.
Top green stock
Investors are already moving to renewable energy stocks even before the throne speech. Among the top clean energy investment options is Northland Power (TSX:NPI). This $8 billion company is more than three decades old and has seen incredible earnings growth (31% CAGR) over the last three years.
The majority of its renewable operations are in Eastern Canada. Northland currently operates almost 2,500 MW of electricity, although capacity production should increase by 16.5% once the 400 MW project under construction is complete.
Northland Power operates 25 assets where 19 facilities are in the populous Ontario province. A pair of wind farms are operating offshore in Germany and the Netherlands. The most recent acquisition is a highly regulated renewable company in Colombia that delivers reliable revenue.
For income investors, this utility stock pays a respectable 3.02% dividend. The payouts should be safe, given the 63.49% payout ratio. Northland Power showed its continued resiliency and stability in the six months ended June 30, 2020. Net income increased 24.57% to $349.3 million compared with the same period in 2019.
“This is not a time for austerity” is the mantra of Trudeau’s throne speech. There’s a load of promises that centres mostly on recharging Canada’s battered economy.
However, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce is worried about the debt load future generations will face. Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland will give the budget targets later this year.
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Fool contributor Christopher Liew has no position in any of the stocks mentioned.