Burnaby Board of Trade Statement on Federal Budget 2024


Burnaby, April 16, 2024 Yesterday, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland unveiled the new 2024-2025 federal budget in Ottawa. One of the BBOT’s biggest concerns with the Federal Budget is the significant $39.8 billion deficit, and the lack of a plan to balance the budget or reduce the annual deficit to below $20 billion. Servicing this debt will have a significant impact on what the government will be able to invest in other needed areas.  

The Burnaby Board of Trade is concerned about some of the changes to Capital Gains tax, particularly how they’ll affect business owners on the sale of their businesses, although the lifetime capital gains increase on June 25, 2024, will help with taxes on small businesses.

The introduction of the new Canadian Entrepreneurs incentive is promising as it will lower capital gains inclusion rates to 1/3 (33.3%) on eligible capital gains up to $2 million from selling all or part of a business. However, there is cause for concern as many sectors are excluded. The BBOT will closely monitor the implementation of this incentive.

The Burnaby Board of Trade believes a great opportunity was missed with the government not reinstating the CDAP (Canada Digital Adoption Program), which we believe was a tremendous support for small businesses looking to transition into an increasingly digital environment.  BBOT will continue to encourage government to revisit the decision to end this program.

There are still concerns regarding housing, however it is encouraging to see the goal of building 2 million homes by 2031. The budget introduces various measures, like funding for construction, leveraging federal lands, and potential taxes on vacant residential plots. It also includes $15 billion for apartment construction loans, extends mortgage terms for first-time buyers, and increases RRSP withdrawal limits.

“Today’s budget contains few surprises. Most of the major new spending was announced by the government over the last few weeks, and the government’s projections for the deficit are largely in line with previous predictions. Instead of using a revenue windfall to reduce the deficit more quickly, the government chose to use it along with changes to the capital gains tax, to fund this new spending.

What’s still missing is a clear plan to promote productivity and restore economic growth in Canada. Canada continues to slip further behind our competitors in both of these categories. 

Our lagging productivity and stalled GDP growth means Canadians are becoming collectively poorer and working harder to just remain where they are today. Among the positive announcements in today’s Budget, we’re happy to see a focus on streamlining internal trade. Strengthening our internal trade could elevate GDP growth by up to 8% and fortify Canada’s economic foundation. It shouldn’t be easier to trade with Europe than it is within our own country.”

-Perrin Beatty, President and CEO, Canadian Chamber of Commerce

For more information:

Government Full Budget
Canadian Chamber of Commerce: Capital Gains
Canadian Chamber of Commerce: Our Policy Experts’ Insights

KPMG’s Tax Change Summary