The federal government must focus on Canada’s productivity to support sustained economic recovery and growth, says the Society of Management Accountants of Canada (CMA Canada) in its pre-Budget proposal.
To support business owners, it adds officials should improve research and development programs, as well as introduce measures like staff training tax credits.
Also, Budget 2011 introduced a $9-million investment plan aimed at boosting the literacy and financial knowledge of Canadians. Since it soon expires, CMA Canada says it should be renewed for another two years.
Read the group’s full proposal.
Meanwhile, the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal has expanded on its pre-Budget proposal released in January.
The organization offers three main suggestions, which are:
- stay the course for a balanced Budget without increasing tax burdens;
- prioritize infrastructure spending; and
- boost Canada’s global competitiveness by supporting international markets and strengthening trade ties with countries like India.
Read the Board of Trade’s full proposal.
On the tax front, PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is pushing for officials to “enhance the competitiveness of Canada’s tax system in order to attract business investment and human capital.”
Any new measures have to leave room for the government to raise revenue, however, so PwC’s proposal includes three main sections.
First, it says a more efficient tax regime is needed in Canada. Rather than increase corporate income, capital and payroll-type taxes, though, official should adopt “a formal system of group taxation that would further enhance the the federal and provincial corporate tax systems.”
Then, PwC says the country should enter into international trade, investment protection and tax agreements, particularly with emerging countries. These will offer better access to foreign markets for businesses.
Lastly, it suggests tax administration and innovation can be improved by the cutting of more red tape. For example, the government can allow individual taxpayers to extend the filing of their T1 returns and all relevant forms for up to six months, as well as ensure audits are efficient.
In other news, The Huffington Post predicts the Budget will be more about politics than about what the country needs.
It’s says, “There is no pressing economic need for a balanced budget in the next two years. It will make little difference for Canadian households whether it takes another year or two.”
It adds the Tories may simply want to satisfy that goal and promise prior to the looming federal election. Read more.
So far, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty has signaled he’ll concentrate on skills training, infrastructure and the battered manufacturing sector, as well as on tax loopholes.
And if you’d like to walk a mile in his shoes, don’t forget to follow him on Twitter all today at @JimFlaherty. Both he and the Finance Department will be offering insight on the Budget prior to and during its release, a departure from the traditional media blackout that occurs until 4 pm ET.
Stay tuned as Advisor.ca reports on the Budget throughout the day and after its release. We’ll offer insight and tips on how it affects the industry, your business and your clients.