Saturday, October 11, 2008

‘This is not a bailout:' Harper

BRANTFORD, Ont. — Ottawa's $25-billion backstop for Canadian banks drew fire from the NDP and Liberals shortly after it was announced Friday morning, with Conservative Leader Stephen Harper maintaining the plan is not an American-style rescue of financial institutions and will ultimately cost taxpayers nothing.

“This is not a bailout of banks. This is a market transaction that will cost the government nothing,” he told reporters.

“We are not going in and buying bad assets. What we're doing is simply exchanging assets that we already hold the insurance on and the reason we're doing this is to get out in front. The issue here is not protecting the banks,” Mr. Harper said.

“The issue here is ensuring there will be credit from those banks to the wider borrowing public.”

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