Canadian Recreational Cannabis Tax Of $1 Per Gram
The public has until Dec. 7 to provide feedback on the proposed tax plan and it will be discussed during the next meeting of the federal and provincial finance ministers, scheduled for Dec.10.
Today, the Canadian government unveiled its proposed tax scheme for cannabis- at least $1 per gram plus GST.
It will be at least $1 per gram because the proposed excise tax adds $1 per gram or 10% of the retail price- whichever is higher. Add on the 5% GST, and that means Canadians can expect to pay at least 15% tax on their legal, recreational cannabis. So if the retail price of a single gram of pot is $8, consumers would pay a $1 excise tax and $1.17 in GST for a total of $10.17.
This will most likely lead to an increase in prices for recreational users, as dispensaries usually only charge GST (or HST), if they charge taxes at all.
Blair 'comfortable' price is low enough to compete with illicit market
"I'm very comfortable that the level of taxation that has been determined as appropriate in this case achieves our goals of keeping the price sufficiently low to be competitive with an illicit market, while at the same time not creating an incentive for the consumption and purchase of this drug," said Liberal MP Bill Blair, the government's point man on legalizing marijuana.
"It's a matter of finding the right level of taxation and price in order to achieve both of those very important public purpose aims. I believe that the work that we have done sets a very appropriate level."
The taxes would be levied on both on fresh and dried marijuana, pot-infused oils and seeds and seedlings used for home cultivation.
The 50-50 tax revenue split idea has already rankled at least one premier B.C.'s John Horgan who complained that the provinces won't be getting a fair share, considering they will be doing the bulk of the heavy lifting on legalization, including policing, distributing and regulating the sale of marijuana.
The discussions are still ongoing, said Blair, noting that the consultation period will end just before the provincial and territorial finance ministers gather Dec. 10 and 11 in Ottawa to sit down with federal counterpart Bill Morneau.
"It is part of an ongoing discussion that our finance minister is having with his counterparts, provincially and territorially," Blair said. "It would be inappropriate of me to presume the results of the discussions that are currently taking place there is still work to be done in the consultations."
Municipalities, too, have recently indicated they deserve a share of the revenues.
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