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OTA joins business leaders in support of sales tax reform

TORONTO, Ont. -- The Ontario Trucking Association has joined a coalition of leaders from the business communit...

TORONTO, Ont. — The Ontario Trucking Association has joined a coalition of leaders from the business community to demonstrate support for sales tax reform in Ontario.


The Smart Taxation Alliance also includes the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, AGS Automotive Systems, Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Canadian Council of Chief Executives, Canadian Manufacturer’s & Exporters Ontario, Certified General Accountants of Ontario, Ontario Road Builders Association, Retail Council of Canada, TD Bank Financial Group, and the Toronto Board of Trade.


The coalition is endorsing the planned harmonization of the provincial sales tax with the federal GST, calling it “the most important measure available to stimulate economic recovery.”


A report from TD Economics suggests that the implementation of harmonized sales tax – or HST – in Ontario would  eliminate billions of dollars in business costs, which, in turn, would results in lower prices for consumers. The report  also points out that concerns of a large overall increase in consumer prices are overblown, and that effects to the inflation rate would not be long-lasting.


The projected positive impacts of a single sales tax, when combined with other announced tax reforms, as suggested in a media release, would include:

-Cutting the marginal effective tax rate on new investment in half;

-Encouraging business investment in Ontario and the creation of jobs;

-Cutting in half the red tape suffered by businesses in Ontario in the collection, remittance and auditing of sales taxes, for an estimated annual savings of $500 million;

-Removing layers of embedded taxes in goods and services throughout Ontario valued at roughly $5 billion;

-Levelling the playing field with all goods and services in the economy so that all sectors contribute equally to revenue generation in the province; and,

-Increasing competitiveness of Ontario business.


“The move to a harmonized sales tax will bring Ontario into the 21st century in terms of business input taxation and into conformity with tax norms in most of the world’s industrialized countries. Sales tax reform has been a key recommendation of virtually every OTA pre-budget submission of the past decade. For far too long the Ontario trucking industry and other business sectors have been living with a business input tax system that is archaic, regressive, uncompetitive compared to most other provinces and US states and administratively burdensome,” said David Bradley, president of the OTA. “Ontario trucking companies currently administer three different sales tax systems – the PST, the Ontario Multi-Jurisdictional Vehicle Tax and the federal GST. All of this combines to create a drag on investment in new equipment and technology.”

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