Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced the 2017 budget today. While there is some good news for those seeking additional childcare, there is also a small tax increase coming to alcohol and tobacco — as well as a whole new tax for Uber.
In an effort to “reflect changes in the economy,” the government will be updating tax measures ride-sharing services such as Uber. According to the report, the Liberal government will “amend the definition of a taxi business under the Excise Tax Act to level the playing field and ensure that ride-sharing businesses are subject to the same GST/HST rules as taxis.”
Canadians who are using Uber have not been paying taxes for the service, only paying for “tolls, surcharges, and fees.” Though this may seem like a mere small increase to the cost of Uber, it could take Canada one step closer to seeing the rumoured ‘Netflix Tax,’ otherwise known as a digital streaming services tax.
“What we’ve done is say…if you’re in an Uber or in a taxi, you pay GST. That’s consistent with what Canadians expect,” said Morneau.
In a statement to MobileSyrup, Uber Canada’s Susie Heath stated, “We are reviewing the Budget and will have more to say in the coming days.”
The GST/HTC applies to Uber rides and other ride-sharing services on July 1st, 2017.