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Alberta workers pay four times what Ontario workers pay to CPP: study

Report suggests one factor is that Alberta has a higher share of the working-age population

Albertan workers disproportionately contribute to the Canada Pension Plan, a new study released Wednesday suggests.

From 2008 to 2017, Albertans paid $27.9 billion more to CPP than the province’s retirees received in payments over the past decade, according to the study by the Fraser Institute.

In 2017 only, Alberta workers made 16.5 per cent of all contributions to the CPP, but pensioners received 10.8 per cent of CPP payments.

The province’s net contribution that year was $2.9 billion.

READ MORE: Five highlights in the 2019 federal budget

Over 10 years, its contribution was almost four times that of Ontario, the next highest contributing province, the study said, at $7.4 billion.

The study points to three main factors: Alberta has a higher share of the working-age population, it maintains higher employment rates for those of working age, and employees benefit from higher-than-average market incomes than people elsewhere in Canada.

Provinces can opt out of the CPP program as Quebec did when it was first introduced in the 1960s and provide their own program, according to the report.

“Canadians in other parts of the country clearly benefit from Alberta’s outsized financial contribution to the country,” said Jason Clemens, executive vice-president of Fraser Institute and study co-author. “So Canadians and governments across the country should be more accommodating to help Alberta prosper.”

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley has fought hard against B.C. Premier John Horgan over the expansion of the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline, which transports oilsands crude from Edmonton to the Vancouver-area coast.



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