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It is time for tax reform if the country’s economy is to strengthen, according to CPA Canada.

“Tax reform would improve Canada’s international competitiveness, productivity, economic growth and long-term prosperity,” Kevin Dancey, CPA Canada’s president and CEO, told the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance. “There has not been a thorough review of Canada’s tax system since the Royal Commission on Taxation in 1966.”

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Dancey is asking the committee to again endorse CPA Canada’s recommendation that the federal government undertake a comprehensive review of the country’s tax system to reduce its complexities and inefficiencies. In the past, the committee has endorsed tax simplification.

“We acknowledge that the government has introduced measures to lower taxes and has made improvements to ease the compliance burden, but more can be done,” he says.

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CPA Canada is calling for the government to appoint an independent expert panel to provide advice on options to streamline the tax system. In addition, the organization wants the government to consider creating a permanent, independent tax simplification office, as in the U.K., to review existing and proposed measures.

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Dancey also notes that red tape places an undue burden on business and stifles competition and growth. CPA Canada is again recommending that the government adopt standardized business reporting — namely XBRL — to help reduce compliance costs for business, and to improve the government’s data collection. Standardized business reporting was included in the committee’s recommendations in 2012 and 2013.

The presentation also touched on several other key areas of interest, including financial literacy, domestic and international trade along with research and development.

Originally published on Advisor.ca

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