United Conservative Party leader Jason Kenney announced on Monday that, if elected, he would drop the corporate tax rates by one-third.
The UCP issued a release on March 4 stated that the Job Creation Tax Cut was estimated to create 55,000 jobs and grow the economy by $13 billion by 2023 as a result of bringing the tax rate from 12% down to 8% for corporations.
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“A UCP government will implement the Job Creation Tax Cut to reduce the provincial tax rate on employers by one third, from twelve percent to eight percent over four years,” Kenney said in the release.
“This will make Alberta once again a magnet for job-creating investment, with the lowest taxes on employers in Canada.”
The release includes statistics from UofC economist Bev Dahlby, who stated that the cut could provide an economic incentive for businesses in the province, which in turn could result in a $12.7 billion increase to Alberta’s GDP.
The plan would be to reduce the general business rate to 11% on July 1, and then see a point of reduction each year until 2022-2023.
At 8%, it would be the lowest in the country (unless other provinces got similar ideas), which Kenney says would give Alberta a shot at competing with the US.
“Tax reform in the United States means that we have gone from having a big tax advantage over our US competitors, to having higher taxes than the vast majority of US states,” Kenney said.
“That’s one reason why tens of billions of dollars have moved from Alberta to the US since the NDP came to office, and countries around the world are cutting the business taxes to keep up. Either we get back the Alberta Advantage, or we will see more major employers move jobs and investment from our province to lower-taxed jurisdictions.”
Notley responded to the announcement on Twitter on Tuesday morning, calling the tax cut “a huge tax giveaway to big corporations.”
“Working together, we’ve come a long way,” Notley said in a recent tweet.
“While Jason Kenney promises giveaways to big corporations and the wealthiest 1%, I’m going to keep fighting for good jobs, strong schools and hospitals, and a more diversified and resilient economy.”
An official election date has not yet been called, but given the rules laid out in the Election Act, it will have to fall sometime between March 1 and May 31.