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Canadian businesses want action in federal budget to make Canada competitive, says Canadian Chamber of Commerce

(OTTAWA) – February 20, 2019 – From every corner of the country, business leaders want to see the March 19 budget propose effective measures to help Canadian businesses compete.

“This will be the last budget before the federal election. It’s a critical opportunity for the government to address the growing uncertainty in Canada’s business community,” said the Honourable Perrin Beatty, President and CEO, Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “Our members, businesses on Main Street in every town across the country, want to know that the Government has a plan to reset Canada’s economic direction. Business owners want Canada to be an attractive place to start or grow a business, and to invest in.”

Budget 2019 comes as Canada continues to lose investment and talent, in part because of the number of resource-based projects that have stalled or been abandoned. And many businesses are handicapped by internal barriers that make it easier to trade with other countries than within Canada.  

Beatty added, “All of these factors are well within our control to change, but Ottawa needs to show that it understands the urgency and is prepared to act. Canadian businesses have been consistent and clear about what’s needed to overcome Canada’s economic challenges, and their voices are captured in the Canadian Chamber’s pre-budget submission. The budget will demonstrate whether the government has been listening.”

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s pre-budget submission recommends the federal government concentrate on five key areas –regulation, taxes, innovation, international trade, and human resources – to help Canadian businesses thrive in an increasingly competitive global economy.

Of particular focus, business want the budget to include measures to assist by:

 

·        Establishing a Royal Commission to study Canada’s tax system and recommend ways to improve business competitiveness and reduce its administrative burden.

·        Redoubling efforts to dismantle barriers to interprovincial trade.

·        Establishing a government-business working group to develop new or better tools to reduce the cumulative regulatory burden facing Canadian companies. These tools should include measures to combat the inconsistent application of regulations and ensure best practices by regulators.

 

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is the vital connection between business and the federal government. It helps shape public policy and decision-making to the benefit of businesses, communities and families across Canada with a network of over 450 chambers of commerce and boards of trade, representing 200,000 businesses of all sizes in all sectors of the economy and in all regions. News and information are available at Chamber.ca or follow us on Twitter @CdnChamberofCom.

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Chamber experts in taxation, regulation, trade, innovation, and skills are available for comment.

For more information, please contact:

Phil Taylor
Senior Director, Strategic Communications and Public Affairs
ptaylor@chamber.ca (preferred and fastest response time)
613.238.4000 (2231)