The House

Do you need more ways to save for retirement? The politics of CPP

Do Canadians need another way to save money? Former governor of the Bank of Canada David Dodge gives us his take on the federal government's surprise (but still vague) announcement that they're considering allowing voluntary contributions to the Canada Pension Plan.
An older man holds a pamphlet with the words My Future My Retirement Plan.
Splitting CPP credits with an ex-spouse is mandatory in all provinces except B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan and Quebec. (Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press)


"No wonder Canadians are confused, given that alphabet soup of plans that are out there," David Dodgeformer governor of the Bank of Canada, tells us this week on The House.

When Finance Minister Joe Oliver stood up in the House of Commons earlier this week to announce his Conservative Party is "open" to giving Canadians the option to voluntarily contribute more to the Canada Pension Plan, it was a surprising flip-flop from a government that has previously opposed any changes to the CPP. 

So what changed? And do Canadians really need more ways to save -- or just more money, period? 

Dodge has been a vocal advocate for pension reform for years. What does he think of Oliver's announcement? 

"I don't think he knows what he meant, and I certainly don't know precisely what he meant," Dodge tells host Evan Solomon. 

What Dodge does know is that saving for retirement is not a partisan political issue, so we check in with Pierre Poilievre, the Minister of Employment and Social Development, on the Conservatives' about-face and if their plan goes beyond politics and rhetoric. 

"We should let workers decide for themselves what they should be saving," Poilievre says of the reason behind the government's openness pension reform.

As for the details behind the plan? Poilievre isn't saying much, promising more to come after public consultations.