Government of Canada’s statement in response to Auditor General of Canada report on the Taxation of E-Commerce


May 7, 2019            Ottawa, Ontario            Canada Revenue Agency

Following the tabling of the 2019 Spring Reports of the Auditor General of Canada, the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue, and the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, issued the following statement in response to Report 3 entitled "Taxation of E-Commerce," which included two recommendations for the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and one recommendation for the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA):

"Online shopping is now a mainstay for Canadians, as well as Canadian businesses of all sizes. We have seen the retail landscape transform as more people make purchases online.

As we continue to examine what the growth in e-commerce means for our tax system, we welcome the views of the interim Auditor General with regard to the taxation of e-commerce. We thank him and his team for their work and accept the recommendations.

As noted in the Report, the CRA has already identified e-commerce as posing a risk to compliance. The CRA has taken appropriate first steps, within its authority, to address it. This includes educating taxpayers of their GST/HST obligations and conducting test audits.

Canadians can be assured that the CRA’s compliance efforts in e-commerce have reflected, and will continue to reflect, the scale of risk e-commerce poses to tax revenues.

Canadians currently benefit from having their low-value, courier shipments cross the border faster thanks to streamlined processes for qualified courier companies. The CBSA is continuously making efforts to modernize the customs processes to meet the increasing volume of e-commerce."


Émilie Gagnon
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of National Revenue

Media Relations
Canada Revenue Agency

Scott Bardsley
Manager of Media and Communications
Office of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Media Relations
Canada Border Services Agency

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