By Dave Hamilton
As a long time supporter of the introduction of harmonized sales taxes across Canada, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters is extremely disappointed with the results of the HST vote in British Columbia.
BC industries are faced with a variety of competitive challenges, including increased global competition, continued protectionism in foreign markets, rising input and commodity costs and a high Canadian dollar, stated CME’s BC Vice President, Peter Jeffrey. ‘The HST would have helped significantly with these challenges and made our industries more competitive’says Jeffrey.
Sometimes governments have to do the right thing even in the face of political opposition. That is what leadership is all about. It is what the BC government attempted to do in its initiative to harmonize the provincial sales tax with the GST. CME still believes it is the right thing for the economy and it would preserve jobs in BC’s beleaguered manufacturing sector. At the same time we must respect the democratic process,’ added Jeffrey.
At a recent board meeting, the BC Board of Directors issued the following resolution, which was unanimously carried: ‘They express the support of CME-BC for the recent changes proposed by the government to the HST program, including the rate reductions. They continue to believe that adoption of the HST is a critical element in creating a strong economic climate within the province. While the planned changes to the corporate income tax rates are not ideal, they are prepared to take on the additional burden in order to support adoption of the HST, which improves competitiveness and employment prospects in the province’
“Even though British Columbian’s voted no to this tax proposal that would have strengthened the competitiveness of our industries in the province, CME will work aggressively with the Government of BC to additional corporate tax reform and ensure that the province is a great place to invest in, employ families, and do business.”