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Freeland Announces Liberal Plans for Capital Gains Tax Legislation, Urges Clarity on Party Positions

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland announces that the Liberal government will present its proposal to raise the capital gains inclusion rate to Parliament and urges other parties to clarify their stances on the issue.

“Before the House adjourns, we will initiate the legislative process to increase the capital gains inclusion rate,” stated Ms. Freeland on May 21.

She also emphasized the need for all Members of Parliament and political leaders to make decisive choices regarding what constitutes a fair and responsible economic strategy for the nation.

Currently, only half of a capital gain is taxable in Canada, while the other half is exempt. The Liberal government is proposing to raise the capital gains tax exclusion rate from one-half to two-thirds for capital gains exceeding $250,000 for individuals, and from one-half to two-thirds for the entire gain for corporations and trusts.

However, the government has opted to introduce this change as a separate bill in Parliament at a later date, separate from its budget implementation legislation.

The proposed increase in the capital gains tax has sparked controversy among business groups. The Canadian Federation for Independent Business and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce expressed concerns to Ms. Freeland in a letter dated May 9, warning that the change could restrict opportunities for all generations and diminish Canada’s competitiveness and innovation.

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“Given the increasing wealth concentration among the richest individuals, it seems reasonable to ask them to contribute a little more,” he mentioned in a post on the social media platform X (formerly Twitter).

The Liberal government forecasts that the higher inclusion rate will generate $19.4 billion in revenue over the next five years.

Conservatives’ Position on Tax

During the press conference on May 21, Ms. Freeland criticized Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre for avoiding questions about his stance on the tax increase.

“It’s crucial for Canadians to demand a clear response from the Conservatives regarding tax fairness. Depending on their answer, Canadians will understand whose interests the Conservatives truly represent,” she remarked.

While tax fairness is a key aspect of Mr. Poilievre’s political agenda, with repeated assurances to eliminate the federal carbon tax if elected as prime minister, he has remained relatively quiet on the capital gains tax hike.

During a press conference on May 16, Mr. Poilievre declined to address a reporter’s query about supporting the capital gains tax increase.

“There is no such increase. They removed that from the budget. Thank you,” responded the Tory leader.

A spokesperson for Mr. Poilievre informed The Epoch Times on May 21 that the party will oppose the Liberal budget but found it difficult to determine whether the Conservative leader would back a capital gains tax increase, as “the legislation in question has not been finalized yet.”

With information from The Canadian Press.

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