Federal Budget 2018 – Analysis from the Canadian Chamber
“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.”
10 Ways to Build a Canada That Wins
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce set out its proposals to make Canada a more competitive, and attractive, country for businesses in the recent 10 Ways to Build a Canada that Wins document. Among these was a recommendation to make Canada an investment magnet by completely overhauling our archaic tax system.
Hot Topic: Tax Treatment of Passive Investment Income:
New rules for the tax treatment of small business passive income are simpler than previously proposed and will mitigate negative impacts on savings and investment for most small business owners. They will, however, still increase taxes for a small percentage of Canadian Controlled Private Corporations with passive investment income over $50,000. For more on this see the full Canadian Chamber Budget Analysis
Results for Our Members
Budget 2018 contained a number of measures that reflect the policy recommendations, and the advocacy work, of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, working in partnership with our national Chamber network. Following are some of the Chamber-supported initiatives that made it into this year’s Budget.
Cyber Security, Intellectual Property, and Innovation:
- Taking steps to streamline and simplify access to government innovation incentive programs.
- $150 million to be invested toward DARPA.
- De-risking the commercialization of innovative technology.
- Increased support to entrepreneurs by making it easier for them to access capital.
- Funding for a patent collective pilot project and an IP marketplace.
- A $100 million investment toward rural access to digital networks.
- Coordinating an approach toward cyber security.
- Amalgamation of multiple trade promotion programs under the Trade Commissioner Service to ensure a simplified offering for business.
- Additional funding to support Canadian companies looking to tap into export opportunities within Asia.
- Announcement of government plans to streamline the administration of the customs tariff legislation to reduce compliance costs for business.
Labour Market, Skills, and Training:
- Expansion of the Canada Summer Jobs program and the Youth Employment Strategy.
- Simplification of the application process for businesses seeking partnerships and financial support through the “Innovation Canada” single window.
- Commitment to simplify support programs for entrepreneurs, all-of-government data collection for performance metrics.
- Investment in capacity development for Indigenous peoples’ self-determination.
Transportation and Infrastructure:
- A commitment to fund the renewal of VIA Rail’s fleet for the Windsor-Quebec City corridor.
- A $236.4 million investment toward CATSA for air security screening.
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