Parizeau worried about Quebec economy; says "shock therapy" needed to fix it

Ryan Remiorz/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Former Premier Jacques Parizeau says for the first time in decades, he is worried about Quebec's economy.

'It's the first time in 30 years that I am worried about the economic future of Quebec," the 81-year-old former premier wrote in an opinion piece in the Journal de Montréal.

In it, he says there's been an undeniable deterioration in Quebec's finances, and that "shock therapy" will be needed to correct it.

Parizeau says it would make more sense for Quebec to invest money in small- and medium-sized businesses, rather than investing in large projects and offering massive tax breaks, such as last week's $450 million funding of a cement plant in the Gaspé region.

And he says he agrees fully with the report that came out last month from the HEC, the University of Montreal's business school, which painted a portrait of Quebec living beyond its means with fiscal and economic policies that are unsustainable.

Another recent study, from the University of Sherbrooke, suggests unless the Quebec government makes a sea change in the way it spends money, it faces an "apocalypse" in the next 35 years.

CJAD's political analyst Jean Lapierre says Parizeau's words will carry considerable weight with Quebec's political class, considering his experience and his years as a finance minister under René Lévesque.

'Everybody knows [the economy] is his specialty, and I guess it's a big wake-up call."

Parizeau's last piece for the Journal was his criticism of his old party's secularism charter.

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  1. clint posted on 02/10/2014 10:12 AM
    Jack, Jack, Jack,....you never cease to amaze me.
    The situation here must be hurting you financially for you to come out and say this.
  2. joeN posted on 02/10/2014 10:17 AM
    Eye for an Eye as they say. Is he getting even with Marois & PQ for his wife's expulsion from PQ inner circle? Amazing, he says it, it's ok but when the anglo's and non francophones point out that the economy is tanking and the PQ is living in some lala land with phoney and empty promises to all the self interest groups such as the students and off island communities, it's Quebec bashing. Again, this province is nothing but a huge OXYMORON.
    1. George73 posted on 02/10/2014 04:18 PM
      @joeN I doubt its the province that is an oxymoron. Just those currently 'running' it.
  3. Max posted on 02/10/2014 10:28 AM
    Interesting, one of the patron saints of Bay Street and the GTA economy,
    is all of a sudden concerned. The hyporacy transcends multiversal time and space !
    Many Eastern Ontario towns, like Cornwall, Kingston, etc, have a "Montreal street."
    DO THE MATH.
  4. markR posted on 02/10/2014 11:20 AM
    Did the SAQ not list his wine label from his winery in France? Let the PQ in fighting commence!!!
    1. joeN posted on 02/10/2014 07:19 PM
      @markR Yeah !! Someone give him a soapbox to spew more of this stuff. It will be Philipp Flop's savior.
    2. GT posted on 02/10/2014 07:29 PM
      @markR The man who blamed the loss of his referendum on money and ethnics is now asking Quebecers to rethink this due to the abissmal economics of this province?? Give this guy another microphone and let him do more damage to the PQ. Maybe the Liberals should hire him to do testimonials for their election ads.
  5. Paul posted on 02/10/2014 11:52 AM
    It's sad to see how the PQ have chased away business and destroyed the Quebec economy. The people voted them in (several times) so I suppose they deserve what they got.

    At some point Quebec wont be able to continue to do important things like duplicating federal services and hiring language police and discussing religious head-gear.
  6. jm posted on 02/10/2014 12:58 PM
    It's about time he woke up. Now all he has to do is realize what's killing our great province!! Maybe he should go out and bang on some pots, like his good friend Queen Pauline. Just wondering if in his days as finance minister he didn't back any major spending on useless projects and/or industries?? The only thing i disagree with is his timeframe of 35 years, the way things are being run in Quebec now I'm sure with her great efficiency Queen Pauline can get that APOCALYPSE to happen a lot quicker, and not waste the next 35 years.
  7. CDU posted on 02/10/2014 07:08 PM
    Here's a shock for Jacques - admit once and for all that Bill 101 helped destroy this province and that it is time to get rid of it!
  8. Peter posted on 02/10/2014 09:40 PM
    Give the man a cigar. He is worried. Like in Detroit . Recievership of a province could very well bounce his pension check. Get ready.. The banks will extract their pound of flesh and no charter of values or seperation mouvement will stop them. New York Bankers will eat Quecbec for supper.
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