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Shea Promotes Canadian Anti-Evasion Initiatives

by Mike Godfrey,, Washington

12 April 2013

Canada's Revenue Minister has been promoting a number of initiatives designed to strengthen the Revenue Agency's (CRA's) capacity to crack down on international tax avoidance and evasion.

Gail Shea said of the Budget 2013 measures: "Our Government is taking strong action to tackle tax evasion." Of the tax reforms announced by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty last month, a majority concentrated on compliance. Those specifically associated with the CRA focused largely on enlarging its information gathering powers.

A new Stop International Tax Evasion Program will permit the CRA to pay individuals with knowledge of major international tax non-compliance a percentage of the tax collected as a result of the information provided. In addition, all financial institutions currently reporting information on international electronic fund transfers greater than CAD10,000 (USD9,847) to the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) must now also report these transactions to the CRA.

Canadian taxpayers with overseas income or properties will be required to report more information, and the CRA will be allowed more time to reassess those who have not properly reported this income. Finally, the process for obtaining information on third parties in the course of conducting an audit will be streamlined. This will speed up the process and give the CRA faster access to information.

"These new measures will provide the CRA with additional tools to combat tax cheats," Shea explained. "Our Government is serious about cracking down on those who attempt to cheat the system. Since 2006, our Government has introduced over 75 measures to improve the integrity of the tax system for the benefit of all Canadians."

TAGS: individuals | compliance | Finance | tax | tax compliance | tax avoidance | revenue guidance | audit | tax authority | Canada | revenue statistics | tax reform

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