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Harper Government Improves Online Services and Reduces Red Tape to Help Canadians Save Time During Tax Season

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA -- (Marketwired) -- 03/20/14 -- Canada Revenue Agency

The Honourable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of National Revenue, accompanied by Joyce Bateman, Member of Parliament, Winnipeg South Centre, today met with members of the local business community to discuss the Government of Canada's progress on reducing red tape, and the recent improvements that have been made to the Canada Revenue Agency's (CRA) online services.

As part of the Government's Red Tape Reduction Action Plan, the Government of Canada has launched a number of service enhancements for businesses, including several introduced in Economic Action Plan 2014, which the CRA will implement over the next year:

- In April 2014, the CRA's electronic filing services will be expanded to allow businesses to file amended T2 corporate income tax returns online and representatives for businesses will be able to submit an electronic authorization request to the CRA instead of filing paper forms.

- In October 2014, businesses will be able to update their banking and direct deposit information online, and the first free online option for paying taxes will be available for business owners registered with My Business Account. A detailed payment history for all of their accounts will also be available in one secure and convenient place.

- The Government is revising remittance thresholds for employer source deductions to reduce the maximum number of payments that businesses are required to prepare and submit to the CRA.

- Economic Action Plan 2014 will simplify tax rules for the lifetime capital gains exemption when certain individuals operate both farming and fishing businesses to allow for more consistent treatment.

- The CRA will continue to build partnerships with the small business community as well as provincial and municipal governments on initiatives such as the CRA's Business Number, the recently announced Liaison Officer Initiative (LOI) pilot project and the proposed Registration of Tax Preparers Program (RTPP), all intended to support taxpayers to more easily manage their tax affairs and "get it right from the start."

In addition, Minister Findlay noted that the recently signed Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA) will allow Canadian businesses to focus on what they do best: creating jobs and generating wealth in communities across Canada. The CKFTA will create thousands of new jobs in Canada and provide Canadian businesses and workers with a gateway to Asia. It will also level the playing field for Canadian companies competing with Korea's other trading partners, including the United States and the European Union, who already have free trade agreements with Korea.

On Thursday morning, Minister Findlay also met with employees of the Winnipeg Tax Services Office (TSO) where she reiterated the CRA's commitment to service and integrity when dealing with taxpayers from coast to coast. The TSO employs approximately 580 employees year-round.

Quick Facts

--  In Economic Action Plan 2014, the government renewed its commitment to
    reduce the tax compliance burden for small and medium businesses and
    other tax filers by introducing many enhancements to the CRA's online
    services. Among other new features, businesses will soon be able to
    manage their banking information online, sign up for pre-authorized
    debit services through My Business Account, and file amended T2
    corporate returns.

--  Close to 2.7 million logins were made to My Business Account between
    April 2012 and March 2013. The number of businesses that are enrolled in
    My Business Account and have a business number has more than doubled in
    the last three years.

--  Tariff elimination under the CKFTA will be particularly advantageous for
    Canadian businesses, as average Korean tariffs are three times higher
    than those in Canada. In Manitoba, this will be particularly beneficial
    for agricultural and agri-food products, including wheat and pork;
    industrial products, including nickel, aircraft parts and scientific
    instruments; improved access for professional services; predictable,
    non-discriminatory rules for Canadian investors; improved access to
    South Korea's government procurement market; and strong provisions on
    non-tariff measures, backed up by fast and effective dispute settlement
    provisions.


Quotes

"Our government is keenly aware of the important role that small and medium businesses play in Canada's local, provincial, and national economies. When they succeed, all Canadians reap the benefits."

The Honourable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of National Revenue

"Canadians want to interact with the CRA in a manner that is convenient and efficient. Through My Business Account, business owners have more control over how and when they deal with the CRA regarding their taxes and benefits. The CRA continues to enhance the secure services that are available on our website 24/7. That means less red tape so that businesses can focus on what they do best."

The Honourable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of National Revenue

"Our Government's focus on collaboration and engagement with small and medium businesses is resulting in concrete suggestions for service improvements that will help businesses meet their tax obligations more easily, giving them more time to grow, create jobs and contribute to Canada's economy."

Joyce Bateman, M.P, Winnipeg South Centre

Related Products

Economic Action Plan 2014

Associated Links

Red Tape Reduction

My Business Account

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You can also watch our tax-related videos on YouTube.

Contacts:
Rebecca Rogers
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of National Revenue
613-995-2960

Noel Carisse
Media Relations
Canada Revenue Agency
613-952-9184

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