SAINT JOHN – The province’s finance minister says the Alward government won’t be able to balance the province’s budget until after the 2014 election.

Blaine Higgs says he’s not expecting much improvement in the province’s finances when he tables a deficit-filled budget in March.

Higgs says the province’s economy remains sluggish following the 2008 recession, and adds New Brunswick is at the bottom in economic growth among the provinces.

Premier David Alward said previously he wanted to balance the budget before the next provincial vote.