Canadian Revenue Minister Highlights Support For Business
Monday, December 10, 2012
Speaking at the Certified General Accountants (CGA) Summit on Tax Simplification,
Gail Shea, Canadian Minister of National Revenue, highlighted many of the important
steps the government is taking to ensure Canadian businesses can continue to thrive
under Canada’s tax system.
Shea reiterated the Harper government’s commitment to red tape reduction.
In particular, the Minister outlined what the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is
doing to make sure its action plans are carried out to meet the needs of businesses,
including providing more business-friendly online services, more access to easy-to-understand
information, and giving priority to consulting with small businesses across
Canada to get their views on what changes are most important to them.
"A recent study has ranked Canada as having one of the ten most efficient
tax systems in the world," Shea observed. "Our government is committed
to building on this success, and continuing our efforts. By implementing the
recommendations in the Red Tape Reduction Action Plan, and working to simplify
the tax code through the Technical Tax Amendments Act, 2012 we will continue
to build a tax system that creates jobs and economic growth."
The CGA-Canada Summit on Tax Simplification brought together tax professionals
and policy makers from across the country to discuss Canada’s tax system.
"CGA-Canada has been a leading voice in the growing call for tax simplification
in Canada," said Anthony Ariganello, president and CEO of CGA-Canada. "Today
we welcome Minister Shea’s contributions, among others, to our first-ever
summit on tax simplification and look forward to identifying ways in which we
can improve Canada’s tax system."
The Minister also highlighted the importance of recent legislative amendments
being proposed under the Technical Tax Amendments Act, 2012, which would make
some tax measures simpler, permanent, and more predictable for businesses.
The majority of the proposals in the Technical Tax Amendments Act, 2012, have
already been released for public consultation. They include technical income
tax amendments relating to the taxation of Canadian multinational corporations
with foreign affiliates, and changes to the taxation of non-resident trusts
and their beneficiaries and of Canadian taxpayers who hold interests in offshore
investment fund property. Amendments will also be made relating to foreign tax
credit generators, conversions of specified investment flow-through trusts and
partnerships into corporations, and the creation of a regime of information
reporting on tax avoidance transactions.
The more minor technical income tax measures relate to labor-sponsored venture
capital corporations and to the allocation, among provinces and territories,
of the taxable income of airline corporations. Technical amendments to the Excise
Tax Act include relieving the Goods and Services Tax and the Harmonized Sales
Tax on the administrative service of collecting and distributing the levy on
blank media imposed under the Copyright Act.
If the Technical Tax Amendments Act, 2012 passes through parliament, it will
be the first time in a decade that a comprehensive package of technical income
tax amendments has done so. According to Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, the
lack of such legislation has resulted in a significant backlog of outstanding
measures that need to be addressed. The legislation will therefore provide certainty
for taxpayers, Flaherty said.