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What measures did Canada take to protect its economy during the Great Depression?

During the Great Depression, Canada implemented protectionist policies, increased public works spending, and established unemployment relief camps.

In response to the economic downturn, Canada, like many other countries, adopted protectionist policies. The government increased tariffs on imported goods to protect domestic industries from foreign competition. This was done in the hope that it would stimulate domestic production and thus create jobs. However, these policies also led to a decrease in international trade, which further exacerbated the economic crisis.

The Canadian government also increased spending on public works projects. This was intended to stimulate the economy by creating jobs and increasing demand for goods and services. Projects included the construction of roads, bridges, and public buildings. This not only provided employment for many Canadians but also resulted in infrastructure improvements that benefited the country in the long term.

In addition to these measures, the government established unemployment relief camps. These were essentially work camps where unemployed men were given food, shelter, and a small wage in exchange for manual labour. The camps were controversial, as many saw them as a way for the government to control and exploit the unemployed. However, they did provide some relief for those who were unable to find work elsewhere.

Furthermore, the Canadian government also sought to stabilise the banking system. The Bank of Canada was established in 1935 to regulate the country's money supply and to act as a lender of last resort to commercial banks. This helped to restore confidence in the banking system and prevent bank runs, which had been a major problem during the early years of the Depression.

Overall, Canada's response to the Great Depression involved a combination of protectionist policies, increased public works spending, and the establishment of unemployment relief camps. These measures were aimed at protecting domestic industries, creating jobs, and providing relief for the unemployed. However, they were not entirely successful in mitigating the effects of the Depression, and the Canadian economy did not fully recover until the onset of World War II.

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