UCP government borrowed over $5B in debt since January

The UCP have borrowed nearly $18 billion a year, 20% more than the NDP borrowed.

Last month, the provincial government updated their Term Debt Issues document, which lists all the term debt they still have outstanding.

It’s been over 2 months since I last wrote about the Alberta government’s term debt, so I thought I’d write this brief update.

During that time, the UCP government traded 12 more term debts:

# of debtsTotal debt
January1$0.750 billion
February4$1.500 billion
March7$2.575 billion
Total12$4.825 billion

Keep in mind that two of the new debts are in Australian dollars, so the total amount that Alberta will end up paying for these—in Canadian dollars—may fluctuate:

  • $100 million, maturing in 2046, 2.4725%
  • $200 million, maturing in 2036, 2.01%

The earliest any of the 12 debts will mature is 2031 (four, in fact). The latest is 2071.

The interest rates on these 12 debts range from 1.65% to 3.9%. However, the effective cost of debt (or the interest rate after tax deductions) ranges from 1.711% to 2.988%.

This new $4.825 billion brings the total term debt traded by the provincial government since the UCP were elected to $34.8 billion, spread out over 74 transactions.

The total amount of term debt owned by Alberta government is a little over $98 billion, a third of which has been issued since the UCP were elected a little over a year and a half ago. About 47% of it was issued during the NDP administration.

Keep in mind, however, that it took the NDP 4 years to rack up $49.72 billion in debt. The UCP have accumulated nearly $30 billion in about 2 years. That gives the NDP an average of $12.43 billion a year, and the UCP an average of $17.39 billion a year.

At this rate, the UCP will have borrowed a total of $69.6 billion during their 4-year term, which will be 40% more than the NDP borrowed during their 4-year term.

By the 2023 election, provincial debt could total as much as $132.6 billion, and the UCP portion would make up 52.5% of it, assuming they keep borrowing at this rate. That’s including subtracting the two debts that mature before then.

Support independent journalism

By Kim Siever

Kim Siever is an independent queer journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. He writes daily news articles, focusing on politics and labour.

3 replies on “UCP government borrowed over $5B in debt since January”

Comment on this story

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: