OTTAWA, March 4 /CNW Telbec/ - Although it includes no major initiatives, the Finance Minister introduced a budget that lays the groundwork for economic recovery and emphasizes productivity and innovation, says the Certified General Accountants Association of Canada (CGA-Canada).
"The budget addresses the right priorities - continuing with necessary economic stimulus, focusing on innovation, and charting a course for a return to budget balance," says Anthony Ariganello, CGA-Canada's President and CEO. "The fact that there are no major new initiatives is not a surprise. Nonetheless, the budget contains a number of interesting smaller measures, especially those related to innovation."
A two-year program to assist small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to commercialize innovation and eliminate tariffs on productivity-improving machinery are two examples.
"Improvements to the tax system and the introduction of a Red Tape Reduction Commission are steps that will help create the climate for businesses to grow and innovate," he adds.
The government continues to pursue a more competitive tax regime and Canada is projected to have the lowest corporate income tax rate among G7 countries in 2012.
"The government is moving in the right direction on taxes, but once again it has missed an opportunity to address the biggest problem with our tax system - its excessive complexity. We have been urging the government to create a panel of experts to undertake a complete review of our taxation system with a goal of simplifying it. I hope the new Red Tape Reduction Commission presents an opportunity for such a review," says Ariganello.
"We are pleased the government has laid out a plan for eliminating the deficit and returning to budget balance," says Ariganello. "However, the difficult decisions will come in future budgets and the targets will not be easy to meet. It depends very much on growth in the economy and increasing employment."
The budget also contains measures to strengthen Canada's financial sector.
"The minister maintains that a Canadian securities regulator is required to support a strong and competitive financial sector," says Ariganello. "However, to truly realize that goal, a Canadian securities regulator should have responsibility for setting financial reporting standards and for auditor oversight."
CGA-Canada's complete budget analysis, including tax highlights and a scorecard, is available at cga.org/canada/budget2010.
Founded in 1908, the Certified General Accountants Association of Canada serves 73,000 Certified General Accountants and students in Canada and more than 80 countries. Respected accounting and financial management professionals, CGAs work in industry, finance, government and public practice. CGA-Canada establishes the designation's certification requirements and professional standards, offers professional development, conducts research and advocacy, and represents CGAs nationally and internationally.
For further information: For further information: Taylore Ashlie, Director, Communications, CGA-Canada, Telephone: (604) 605-5055, Cellular: (604) 307-0212, Email: email@example.com; Diana Sorace, Communications Advisor, CGA-Canada, Telephone: (604) 694-6700, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org