Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has put the fate of his government on the line, saying an opposition push to probe how Ottawa is tackling the coronavirus will be put to a confidence vote.
The Liberals, who only won a minority of seats in an October 2019 election, need backing from another party to survive.
Trudeau's fate depends on the left-leaning New Democrats, whose leader Jagmeet Singh says he has no interest in a vote.
"I will not give the prime minister an excuse to plunge the country into an election ... my goal is to help people and I will continue doing that," said Singh, who nevertheless did not say how his party would vote on Wednesday.
The Liberals are under attack from the official opposition Conservatives, who allege some of the more than $C200 billion ($A217.1 billion) handed out in coronavirus aid programs has been misspent.
The Conservatives want a committee to examine what they call the government's ethical problems.
One area of focus is payments to Trudeau's wife and mother by a charity chosen to manage a student grant program.
Trudeau, who insists he does not want an early election, said the mandate of the proposed committee showed the opposition had lost confidence in him.
There is speculation in Ottawa he wants to go to voters before some of the expensive aid programs are wound down.
But a Canadian Broadcasting Corp aggregate tracker of recent opinion polls put the Liberals at 36.5 per cent public support, with the Conservatives at 30.8 per cent, which strongly suggests another minority for Trudeau.
"The opposition is going to have to decide whether they want to make this minority parliament work or whether they have lost confidence in the government," said Trudeau, who is proposing a committee with a broader mandate to probe the response to a pandemic that has killed 9778 people in Canada.
Singh told reporters he had his own suggestions on how the committee should work and said the two sides were close.
But he also blasted Trudeau's stance as ludicrous and farcical, and accused the prime minister of seeking an election while blaming the opposition.
Conservative leader Erin O'Toole - who must decide whether he wants to continue his efforts - earlier told reporters what he called a misuse of funds should be probed.
Australian Associated Press