Canada is lagging behind its international peers when it comes to reviewing and reforming its tax laws, according to a report published Wednesday by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada).
The report, International Trends in Tax Reform: Canada is Losing Ground, documents how Canada is falling behind jurisdictions such as the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Japan, where governments are taking proactive measures to keep tax systems competitive.
Aspects of the Canadian tax system that concern CPA Canada include: high personal income tax rates, a corporate tax advantage that “has been eliminated by U.S. tax reform measures, presenting a serious competitive threat,” and a “a disproportionate reliance on income taxes – rather than consumption taxes” to raise government revenues.
Despite these economic risks, the last comprehensive review of Canada’s tax system was carried out in the 1960s, and it’s high time for another, the organization says.
“Canada needs to act now more than ever, or we will be left trailing the pack,” Bruce Ball, CPA Canada’s vice president, tax, says in a statement. “The report is valuable in that in provides context around what is happening on the global stage and it reinforces why we are witnessing a call to action in this country.”
The report is the first in a series of three reports on Canada’s tax system that it will release this fall, CPA Canada says.