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CPP/QPP hikes are not the answer: CFIB


December 11, 2013
By Canadian Garden Centre & Nursery

Dec. 12, 2013, Toronto — As federal and provincial finance ministers
prepare to discuss proposals for increasing mandatory CPP and QPP
premiums this weekend, new public opinion data reveal that a vast
majority of working Canadians prefer other options to help boost
retirement savings.

Results of a new public opinion poll conducted for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) by Angus
Reid Global show that only 18 per cent of working Canadians see CPP/QPP
increases as one of the best ways for government to help Canadians save
for retirement, well behind other choices like tax cuts (54 per cent),
incentives (47 per cent) and improved voluntary options to save (35 per
cent).

“Finance ministers should be asking if mandatory CPP/QPP
hikes are a good idea, not just WHEN is the right time to introduce
them,” said CFIB president Dan Kelly. “Although governments have been
talking about this for years, no one has ever stopped to ask Canadians
if they support the idea.”

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Governments in Ontario, PEI,
Newfoundland and Labrador and Manitoba have come out in favour of
increasing CPP/QPP, while Saskatchewan and other western provinces have
expressed reservations about mandatory increases. Yet in the public
poll, support for mandatory increases was low in every region of the
country.

“Canadians and their employers are not saving more for
retirement because they simply can’t afford to,” said Laura Jones, CFIB
executive vice-president. “In the public poll, and a similar survey of
CFIB members, 65 per cent of Canadians, and 61 per cent of small
business owners, said so.”

The public poll shows that if working
Canadians are forced to pay more for CPP/QPP, 45 per cent would have a
reduced ability to spend on essentials like food, rent and mortgage
payments and 42 per cent would have a reduced ability to take advantage
of other forms of savings. A survey of CFIB member businesses was also
conducted, with similar questions. In that survey, close to
three-quarters of business owners said they would be under pressure to
freeze or cut salaries if faced with a CPP/QPP hike.

The findings were shared with finance ministers in advance of their meeting.


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