A large proportion of small and medium-sized businesses soon to be subjected to Ottawa’s carbon tax worry they’ll be unable to pass along the bulk of the extra costs to their customers, suggests a new survey being released Tuesday.
The online survey was completed by 3,527 members of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business in the four provinces —Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick — that will have to follow the Trudeau government’s carbon-pricing system as of April 1.
The lobby group has strongly opposed the federal carbon-tax plan out of concern it will pile on too many costs for smaller companies. In fact, more than two-thirds of the business owners that it polled don’t support any kind of carbon pricing program at all.
Ottawa says 90 per cent of the carbon-tax revenues it collects will be returned via rebates to households in each of the four provinces. Consumers will get by far the largest share because the government expects them to ultimately pay most of the new costs passed down from businesses.