Ottawa, January 26, 2007
2007-006

Archived - Canada's New Government Unveils Proposed Improvements to the Application of the GST/HST to the Financial Services Sector

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The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, today released draft legislation, explanatory notes and a backgrounder for several measures aimed at improving and streamlining the application of the goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) to the financial services sector.

"The financial services sector is a key element of the Canadian economy. Ensuring that the tax system functions smoothly and fairly in relation to it will support its continued success both at home and abroad. This ultimately benefits consumers and the Canadian economy" said Minister Flaherty.

The draft legislation released today will address GST/HST advantages that currently exist in favour of imported financial services over comparable domestic services.

The draft legislation also proposes new legislative framework for the GST/HST input tax credit allocation regime applicable to financial institutions. The framework will streamline the application of the GST/HST input tax credit rules for these institutions and reduce the uncertainty arising from the lack of specific guidance in the current legislation.

The Minister also announced that stakeholder consultations would be undertaken on the following proposals:

  • Replacing the complex system of legislative and administrative rules that currently apply to different pension plan trust structures with a new, uniform GST/HST rebate system that will apply fairly and equally to all such structures; and
  • Introducing a new GST/HST annual information schedule for financial institutions to improve GST/HST reporting in the financial services sector.

Printed copies of the documents released today are available for $10 from the Department of Finance Distribution Centre. For detailed information on the draft legislation and explanatory notes visit www.fin.gc.ca.

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For further information, media may contact:

Dan Miles
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Finance
613-996-7861
David Gamble
Media Relations
Department of Finance
613-996-8080

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