Trudeau cabinet meets to discuss rebuilding amid surging COVID-19 cases

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It is in this context that the Liberals' two-day cabinet retreat will be held.

In a statement before the second day of a cabinet retreat in Ottawa, Trudeau said the government is acting to protect Canada's aluminum industry. Originally focused on building a post-pandemic economy, ministers are now expected to spend significant time mulling the immediate challenge of a second wave.

Within a week, the Trudeau government closed the Canada-U.S. border to non-essential traffic and restricted some worldwide flights to four airports - too late to be effective and far less than other countries with much better records of containing COVID-19 had already implemented.

"Obviously, we're going to continue to negotiate".

The PM urged Canadians to continue to remain vigilant ahead of the new season by keeping a safe distance, washing hands regularly and "wearing masks an terrible lot".

Cabinet is receiving presentations from the chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, as well as from the co-chairs of the task forces on COVID-19 vaccines and immunity.

Trudeau prorogued Parliament last month and the speech from the throne will lead to a confidence vote, which could possibly topple the government and trigger a fall election.

And longer-term measures to eventually rebuild an economy that, as Trudeau has put it, is "healthier, safer, cleaner, more competitive, fairer and more inclusive".

As spikes have been observed everywhere from Ontario to Alberta, the prime minister stressed the importance of continuing to follow public health advice amid the pandemic.

"We will have conversations about next steps as well".

In a CBC News story today, Kathleen Harris quotes Justice Minister David Lametti as saying the priority for the government is to tackle the twin challenges of controlling COVID-19 while planning economic recovery.

The speech itself is now expected to focus more on getting through the pandemic than how to rebuild after it's over, with details on the longer-term recovery measures not revealed until an economic statement later in the fall.

The government is operating on the assumption that the global fight against the deadly coronavirus that causes COVID-19 will continue for at least two more years, and that rebuilding the economy then will depend on protecting it now.

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