Canadians who are struggling shouldn’t be expected to pay Canada’s COVID-19 debts. That’s the message Jagmeet Singh shared this week. Instead, the NDP leader says the projected $343 billion deficit should be carried by the country's "richest.”

On Wednesday, July 8, the government released its fiscal “snapshot,” detailing the projected deficit for the upcoming fiscal year.

According to the federal government, it’s expected to hit $343 billion this year — the largest deficit since the Second World War.

Addressing the snapshot on Wednesday evening, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh took to Twitter to explain who he thinks should be footing this hefty bill.

“The cost of recovering from #COVID19 should be carried by the richest, not those struggling to get by,” he wrote.

Singh called on the Liberals to close financial loopholes that allow Canada’s wealthiest people to avoid paying “their fair share.”

He also said that those with fortunes over $20 million should be required to “pay a little bit more.”

In a follow-up post, the NDP leader added, “There is no recovery without childcare,” noting that parents are unable to return to work if their children have nowhere to go.

“Today’s 'snapshot' provides no answers for Canadians who will still need help in the Fall. There is no plan to help people after August,” he said, a nod to the upcoming end to benefits like the CERB.

“Canadians need to know that in a few weeks from now, they can still count on help to get through this,” he wrote.

Since the benefit was announced, Singh has been calling for changes to the CERB. He's urged Trudeau to make it universally accessible and available to people for as long as possible.

In an interview with Power and Politics on July 8, Singh used Amazon and Netflix as examples of companies who have made "massive profits" during the pandemic, but have paid "effectively no taxes in Canada."

Singh also mentioned off-shore tax havens, where he says “$27 billion of wealth is hidden purposefully from Canada, so that it's not contributed back into the economy.”

“These are the things we need to address in the difficult times going forward,” he added.

Sharing the fiscal snapshot on Wednesday, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said, "Some will criticize us on the cost of action, but our government knew that the cost of inaction would've been far greater."

*This article's cover image is for illustrative purposes only.

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