February 28, 2018 | Mississauga, Ontario — Yesterday, Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau tabled the 2018 Budget in the House of Commons. Equality + Growth: A Strong Middle Class presents many interesting measures but does not address the fundamental issues facing Canada’s economy, says the Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CCC) and Mississauga Board of Trade (MBOT).
“Canadian business asked the government to focus on fundamentals like the growing competitiveness gap, the need to attract more private sector investment and presenting a realistic plan to balance the government’s books. Although the budget sets out many positive measures, including support for women entrepreneurs, a clearer path to Indigenous self-determination and improved skills development, it doesn’t address the most basic issues facing our economy,” said the Hon. Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “The cost of running a business in Canada is rising rapidly. Without a strong private sector, there’s no way to pay for all this spending, except by sending the bill to our kids.”
The CCC and MBOT welcomed the greater clarity the budget presented on the government’s approach to taxing private corporations, a sign that government listened to the Chamber and its network.
“It’s good that the government’s approach is more closely focused than the measures proposed last summer, but there’s still much work to be done,” said Mr. Beatty.
“Issues like the new measures on passive income, or the unequal taxation of non-tangible goods, are all symptoms of a broken tax system that discourages investment and growth. It’s now more urgent than ever to have a full, independent review of Canada’s tax system,” he continued.
“This budget missed an opportunity to send a strong message to business to encourage growth and investment but instead hiked spending and is running massive deficits,” said David Wojcik, President & CEO, MBOT. “The United States is undertaking the most massive tax and regulatory update in generations. Meanwhile, Canadian governments are moving in the opposite direction by increasing costs and adding to the regulatory burden. We urgently need federal leadership to close that competitiveness gap to prevent the loss of billions of dollars of investment from Canada,” Mr. Wojcik concluded.