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Chamber urges Canada to hold fast on online duties

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The local Chamber of Commerce has joined a call urging the federal government not to give foreign online retailers cheaper access to Canadian markets.

At the current NAFTA negotiations, the U.S. has asked Canada to raise to $800 from $20 the threshold at which goods can be shipped into Canada by post or courier without having to pay sales tax or duty.

The Chamber says raising the limit would give big online retailers in the U.S. an unfair advantage over their Canadian counterparts.

It estimates it could cost the country up to 300,000 jobs over the next two years and a loss of labour income of $9.2 billion if Canadian negotiators give in.

“Any level of increase … would be unwelcomed for retailers,” said Shirley de Silva, president and CEO of the Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce.

 

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