Improving the tax system: Annual check-up on CPA Canada’s contributions

Each year, CPA Canada takes stock of our collaborative work with the federal government and identifies more ways to help the tax system improve. Find out which initiatives are in the works this year.

Helping to make Canada’s tax system simpler, fairer and more competitive is key to our work in the public interest. We count on our members who work in tax to share their concerns and ideas with us so CPA Canada can raise its views with CRA in the spirit of making Canada’s tax system the best it can be.

This work goes on throughout the year as CPA Canada’s tax sub-committees collaborate with the government on specific areas, like the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)’s services, tax compliance and appeals process. We also prepare detailed responses to government consultations.

The most recent submissions include:

And, once a year, CPA Canada’s Tax Advisory Committee and Commodity Tax Committee assess the progress of our collaborative work and identify new issues and areas where CPAs can make a difference when it comes to tax.

We believe that, for each of the past several years, CPA Canada’s contributions and collaboration with the federal government on tax matters have grown, trusted relationships have strengthened, and positive outcomes have increased.

Current issues we’re discussing with the CRA and Department of Finance Canada include:

  • the need for a comprehensive review of Canada’s tax system 
  • enhancing the technical competency of CRA agents 
  • the extreme technical complexity of some recent tax legislation — especially the tax on split income and inter-corporate dividends
  • the need to clarify the difference between non-Canadian controlled private company start-ups and emerging and scale-up companies for the proposed stock option deduction legislation 
  • improving access to the disability tax credit by simplifying the legislation and not increasing regulation 
  • the need to increase global collaboration and consider practical compliance issues when developing new profit allocation and nexus rules as part of Canada’s efforts on the international tax and digitalization work program being led by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development 
  • developing more CRA guidance on GST/HST guidance to help taxpayers comply 
  • the risk of unintended results from the move to treat some virtual currencies as financial instruments under the GST/HST 

As this list shows, CPA Canada’s tax committees are working to promote an impressive range of administrative, technical, legislative and policy improvements across the tax system. We look forward to advancing this work in the public interest in the coming year.

Keep the conversation going

What issues and ideas for tax system improvements do you think CPA Canada can help address through our work with the federal government? Post a comment below.


CPA Canada’s Tax Blog is designed to create an exchange of ideas on tax policy and practice issues, and their impact on those who practice tax. Your comments can provide helpful input into the public interest advocacy positions developed by CPA Canada.

About the Author

Bruce Ball, FCPA, FCA, CFP

Vice-president, Taxation, CPA Canada