The Broadcasting Act, section 46.1, confers on CBC/Radio-Canada the authority to borrow up to $220.0 million, or such greater amount as may be authorized by Parliament, subject to approval of the Minister of Finance. Section 54.(3.1) of the Act requires that our borrowing plan be included in our Corporate Plan. Borrowing to meet working capital purposes is prohibited.
When we sold long-term accounts receivable in 2009 as part of our Financial Recovery Plan, which addressed the impact of the global economic slowdown and declining television advertising revenue, we provided a guarantee to investors to obtain the best possible value for selling the receivables. This guarantee was deemed to be borrowing. The outstanding amounts against the borrowing authority are as follows:
Under the Broadcasting Act, section 47.(1), we are an agent of the Crown and therefore have the constitutional immunities, privileges and prerogatives that are enjoyed by the Crown. The Crown is also fully liable and financially exposed for all our actions and decisions while we are operating within our mandate. In other words, our assets and liabilities are the assets and liabilities of the Government of Canada.