Ottawa – The proposed federal tax on legal marijuana will be available for public comment until December 7 as Canada prepares to legalize the drug by next summer.
The target date remains July 1,2018.
The plan would add an excise tax of $1 per gram or 10 per cent of the final retail price, whichever is higher, with the revenues to be divided equally between Ottawa and the provinces.
GST will be also be applied, 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.
The tax and pricing system is still in flux as Provincial and Municipal governments are concerned that they will deal with the brunt of managing the monies let alone, how to deal with issues such as impaired driving and how employers deal with impaired and stoned workers in the business.
National Institute for Cannabis Health and Education – NICHE Canada, is happy that the process is going forward.
Barinder Rasode, CEO of the National Institute for Cannabis Health and Education (NICHE) stated in a release:
“Today’s announcement regarding taxation for cannabis sales is a positive step towards the legalization of the industry and we are encouraged that the federal government is releasing their proposal and seeking input before a final framework is established. Legalization of cannabis is a complex issue that will require significant government funding and regulation to ensure we achieve the shared goals of developing a globally competitive industry, while safeguarding public health and safety. We must keep our youth safe, keep our roads safe and reduce the impact of criminal activity. But, these efforts cost money,” says Rasode. “Strong regulations and education programs will require investments from all levels of government. Revenue from a new Cannabis Tax will help governments pay for new programs and services, and we are optimistic all levels of government will work together to create an appropriate framework.”
Rasode adds that collaboration and engagement is critical as the country develops the regulatory framework for legalization, and input from subject matter experts on supply chain, law enforcement, industry development and human resource implications will aid in the safe transition to legal cannabis.