What is the Salary of the Prime Minister of Canada?

Justin Trudeau, the current Canadian Prime Minister. Photo  credit: Art Babych / Shutterstock.com.
Justin Trudeau, the current Canadian Prime Minister. Photo credit: Art Babych / Shutterstock.com.

In Canada, the Prime Minister serves as the head of government. With an annual salary of CAD$347,400, the position of the Prime Minister is both luxurious and powerful. The position is one that has carried over from the Canada's colonial days under the British Empire. As such, the position is an interesting one. The Prime Minister, while head of the government, is not the head of state; this position is held by the Canadian Monarch, who is represented by the Governor General. The monarchy remains at the core of Canada's federal structure, with the current sovereign of the United Kingdom personifying the Canadian Monarch; as such, Queen Elizabeth II is the Queen of Canada. Today, however, the position of Prime Minister has increased powers, leaving the position of the Governor General and Canadian Monarch largely ceremonial.

Justin Trudeau assumed office on November 4, 2015, as the 23rd Prime Minister of Canada and leader of the Liberal Party. Trudeau was sworn in as Prime Minister of Canada by Governor General David Johnson. The Prime Minister is formally referred to as "The Right Honorable," a title they carry throughout their life. In diplomatic situations, the Prime Minister is often referred to as "His Excellency."

Role of the Prime Minister

Although the position of the Prime Minister is appointed by the Governor General, a general election determines the position who best suits the position, having won the largest number of seats in the chamber. As head of the government, the Prime Minister is the head of the federal government’s executive arm. The Prime Minister also co-ordinates the activities of the state. Alongside the Cabinet, the Prime Minister provides a sense of direction and leadership for the entire government. The Prime Minister also appoints most of the civil servants who work in his or her administration. The Prime Minister also appoints persons to fill in significant government positions such as ambassadors to foreign countries, Supreme Court justices, provincial lieutenant governors, and senators among 3,100 other positions.

The Prime Minister’s Role in the Cabinet

First of all, it is important to note that in Canada the Cabinet is an integral part in making decisions in the government. The Prime Minister of Canada appoints the cabinet ministers, who he or she feels fit to work with. He also decides the size of the cabinet. After appointing the cabinet ministers, the Prime Minister then assigns responsibilities to each one of them. One of the key things ensures is done is that women and minorities must have representation in the cabinet. Furthermore, the Prime Minister also takes into account and balances the regional interests of the people. As chair of the cabinet, the Canadian Prime Minister controls the agendas and chairs the meetings.

The Prime Minister's Role in Parliament

Cabinet ministers together with the Prime Ministers, sit in Parliament and coordinate the activities there. The Prime Minister also participates in House of Commons debates, especially those on contentious issues. He is also obligated to justify to the House of Commons the decisions made in the government. Since the Prime Minister is a member of parliament, he also represents the people of his constituency.

The Salary of the Canadian Prime Minister

According to the approved budget of 2018, the total compensation of the Prime Minister of Canada is CAD $347,400 (approximately USD $265,000) per year. The total compensation is paid out between the Prime Minister's salary of CAD $175,600 in addition to a Prime Minister Car Allowance and a Member of the House of Commons Basic Sessional Indemnity. The Prime Minister is also provided with two official residences and an office. The primary residence of the Prime Minister is at 24 Sussex Drive in Ottawa while the secondary residence is a country retreat. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police provide security for the Prime Minister and his family. An armored car is provided for this transportation as well as the shared use of two aircrafts, one for domestic flights (Challenger 601) and one for international flights (CC-150 Polaris).


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