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Canada Will Still Record Surplus, Harper Says

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

17 December 2014


A global drop in oil prices will not stop the Government from balancing the budget in 2015, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has said.

Speaking at an event in Quebec, Harper said that there should be "no doubt" that the Government will succeed in balancing the budget next year. It is "well within that range even with dramatically lower oil prices," Harper said.

Harper did however acknowledge that oil prices will have an impact on the Government's position. "The only question will be how much flexibility we have in the short term," he explained.

Last week, Harper's Finance Minister, Joe Oliver, told reporters that he would monitor oil prices and their effect on corporate tax revenue. He also said that he was comfortable that the Government could still achieve a balanced budget next year.

According to the Government's latest Fiscal Monitor, there was a budgetary deficit of CAD700m (USD600m) for the April-September 2014 period of the 2014-15 fiscal year. This compares with a deficit of CAD10.3bn during the same period in 2013-14. Revenues were up 4.4 percent (CAD5.5bn) year-on-year, reflecting increased personal and corporate income tax revenues.

In November, the Government announced that so-called "income splitting" will be available from the 2014 tax year, enabling families to split up to CAD50,000 of their income each year for tax purposes. The Conservative Party won the 2011 general election on a platform that pledged the introduction of family income splitting once the budget had been balanced.

TAGS: Finance | tax | budget | corporation tax | oil and gas | Canada | revenue statistics | individual income tax

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