The Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal

The Chamber’s recommendations in advance of the 2019 federal budget

The Chamber has submitted its recommendations following the federal government’s 2019 pre-budget consultations. This year, the Government of Canada will be tabling its budget in a unique context. On the one hand, the global, North American, and Canadian economies are showing signs of growth. On the other, political and diplomatic tensions have led to protectionist measures that have created a climate of uncertainty that could hinder the growth of the global economy.

The Chamber’s recommendations sent to Canada’s Minister of Finance aim to improve the competitiveness of our companies and increase the economic rate of growth while providing a certain leeway that would allow us to face an eventual economic decline.

Here is an overview of our main recommendations:

Recommendation 1: Lower the tax rate for businesses in order to make sure all companies can benefit from the Canadian tax advantage.

Recommendation 2: Lower the combined marginal tax rate for individuals to under 50%.

Recommendation 3: Make sure sales taxes are collected on all products and services purchased online.

Recommendation 4: Implement efficient preapproval processes for requests for assistance, specifically pertaining to the Strategic Innovation Fund’s R&D tax credit.

Recommendation 5: Implement and finance a global economic strategy that would coherently group initiatives to support economic growth and innovation and establish measurable objectives.

Recommendation 6: Facilitate access to data to stimulate innovation and reinforce the security of online transactions and accelerate investment in 5G technology throughout Canada.

Recommendation 7: Make sure free trade agreements, including the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), are quickly ratified and make sure the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) is ratified by our partners.

Recommendation 8: Maintain financial support to sectors affected by American tariffs (ex.: aluminum and steel) and make sure to be ready to react quickly to any additional American tariffs.

Recommendation 9: Promote the Canadian Free Trade Agreement to Canadian companies, especially SMEs, in order to increase interprovincial trade and support initiatives to increase trade within Canada.

Recommendation 10: Quickly provide the funds announced for priority infrastructure projects and shed light on the criteria and processes used by the Canada Infrastructure Bank.

Recommendation 11: Invest in the growth of the Port of Montreal while committing the funds necessary to support its expansion.

Recommendation 12: Make financing for Canadian airports more flexible by allowing private partners to provide up to 20% of the capital.

Recommendation 13: Adopt a plan to return to a balanced budget within five to 10 years and include annual interim targets.

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