Press Release from the Canada Revenue Agency Toronto, Ontario, October 25, 2013
The Honourable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of National Revenue, today met with business community leaders at a roundtable event in Toronto to highlight many of the initiatives that the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has implemented as a result of its Red Tape Reduction Action Plan and consultations with small businesses.
“Our Government recognizes the vital role small businesses play in creating jobs and supporting the economy, especially during this week as this is Small Business Week,” said Minister Findlay. “Small businesses provided input with suggested improvements to our services and what they shared helped us as we implemented significant red-tape reduction measures. There are now fewer regulations and the cost of red tape has been reduced by nearly 20 million dollars annually.”
The CRA’s Red Tape Reduction Action Plan webpage, launched today by Minister Findlay, lays out the 12 commitments that the CRA has made, based on the irritants businesses identified during the Red Tape Reduction Commission’s consultations in 2010, and further refined by the CRA’s own consultations in 2012.
“We have already made many improvements to services so that business owners can more easily meet their tax obligations, saving them time and money, and creating jobs in local communities,” said Minister Findlay. “As we continue to implement action plan commitments, and promote and support Canadian businesses large and small through the historic Canada-EU Trade Agreement, we want to make sure that small businesses are informed. Our government is listening and taking action, building on a tradition of service, integrity, and professionalism.”
Some highlights for 2013 are:
- A new CRA Red Tape Reduction Action plan webpage that gives businesses up-to-date information on the CRA’s progress.
- A new online mail service for Canadian small businesses. Businesses can now communicate with the CRA online which will help streamline their interactions with the CRA.
- The My Business Account online enquiries service. Businesses or their representatives can ask the CRA tax-related questions about their accounts online and they will receive answers online and in writing.
- A one-stop-shop webpage for business services. Businesses can now easily find information and service options relevant to their tax situation.
- Agent ID for the CRA’s business enquiries telephone service. Now, when a business owner calls the CRA, the agent who answers provides an ID at the beginning of the call. The Agent ID number provides increased accountability for business calls to the CRA, ensures a consistent experience for callers, and makes it easier for business owners to give feedback on CRA services.
The CRA will continue to consult every two years with small businesses and small business service providers in cities across the country.
For opportunities to participate in further consultations, please visit the CRA’s Red Tape Reduction webpage regularly, and stay connected by subscribing to our mailing lists and joining the conversation on Twitter. The CRA’s next consultation period will be in 2014.
Meanwhile, the Harper Government continues to help create jobs across all sectors of the economy, finalizing an agreement in principle between Canada and the European Union (EU) on a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, seizing an historic opportunity to gain preferential access to the largest market in the world—a market with over 500 million consumers and a Gross Domestic Product of $17 trillion.
Minister Findlay noted that the Canada-EU Trade Agreement will generate prosperity and growth for all Canadian businesses, including small and medium sized businesses, in every region of the country. It will help them to succeed abroad by making it easier and less costly for them to do business in the EU. The Canada-EU Trade Agreement will also help level the playing field in the EU, making Canadian small and medium-sized businesses more competitive, giving them a significant advantage over most third-party competitors.
For more information, visit Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.