Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland introduced legislation Thursday morning that would remove GST charges from new rental developments and update Canada’s competition law.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised new legislation earlier this month to address the housing crisis and lack of affordability.
During a press conference in New York City on Thursday, the prime minister called on other parties to support the legislation.
“I urge opposition leaders to help us quickly pass today’s real solutions,” Trudeau said.
Experts have called on the federal government to remove GST charges from new purpose-built rentals to help promote the construction of these homes.
According to the Finance Department, the measure would provide a $25,000 tax relief for a two-bedroom apartment valued at $500,000.
New projects starting construction between September 14 and the end of 2030 are eligible for the full exemption.
The construction of these projects should be completed by the end of 2035.
The bill is also supposed to strengthen the Competition Bureau – part of the federal government’s efforts to address high prices driven by a lack of competition.
The law will give the bureau the power to demand information from companies to conduct market studies and block collaborations that hinder competition and consumer choice.
It would also eliminate the “efficiency defense”, which has been used to approve anti-competitive mergers in cases where the efficiencies generated compensate for competitive harm.
The changes to the Competition Act follow a promise by the Liberals to review the law.
Freeland, along with several other Cabinet ministers, are scheduled to hold a press conference this afternoon to talk about the new law.