Each year, the Government of Canada outlines its planned spending in the Main Estimates. How these expenditures are planned varies widely across the Government of Canada and within departments. The planning information provided to deputy heads and to the Treasury Board also varies greatly.

The Policy on Investment Planning – Assets and Acquired Services, which replaced the Policy on Long-term Capital Plans on April 1, 2012, supports accountability and oversight in government operations. It also provides a basis for better management through a clear commitment to sound stewardship and the establishment of a management control regime for all aspects of investment planning.

Under the Policy Framework for the Management of Assets and Acquired Services, the policy on investment planning supports the sound management of assets and acquired services and seeks to ensure a disciplined approach to the planning and proposal of investments at the departmental level.

Comparison to the Previous Policy Regime

Under the now-rescinded Policy on Long-term Capital Plans, 18 predefined departments and agencies were required to submit their plan to the Treasury Board. In contrast, the Policy on Investment Planning – Assets and Acquired Services enables all departments and agencies to choose to seek Treasury Board approval of their investment planning process in support of a capacity-based project approval authority limit.

Under the current policy, deputy heads must have an effective investment planning mechanism in place within their organization to ensure that the highest priorities and areas of greatest risk are addressed in their investment plan. These plans cover a minimum five-year planning horizon and are submitted to the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat and, when warranted, to the Treasury Board at least every three years.

More information on the implementation of this policy can be found in the Implementation Strategy for the Policy on Investment Planning – Assets and Acquired Services and the Policy on the Management of Projects.

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