A consultation document on issues relating to the design and operation of government debt programs for fiscal year 2002-2003 and beyond, prepared jointly by the Department of Finance and the Bank of Canada, is being made public today.

Given the outlook contained in the 2001 Budget released 10 December 2001, the debt program is projected to continue to operate at current levels and no major change in debt program structure is envisioned at this time.

The Government is focusing on how to maintain and enhance the functioning of the market in Government of Canada securities as part of its ongoing commitment to consultations with participants on domestic debt programs. In particular, the Government is seeking comments from market participants on bond buyback programs and on the Pilot Cash Management bond buyback program. The Government is also seeking views on a range of issues associated with the operation of government debt programs including the design of treasury bill and bond programs and the status of electronic trading and transparency.

Comments on the specific questions raised in the Debt Strategy Consultation discussion paper are invited from interested parties. These comments must be received by 14 January 2002 and can be sent to: