REGINA- The NDP Opposition in Saskatchewan says it’s time to review how potash royalties are structured.
Leader Ryan Meili says the government needs to recognize the value of potash to the province and the thousands of jobs the industry creates.
He points to a recently published report on the province’s tax regime that said the effective tax rates on potash profits have averaged 6.9 per cent since 2009 compared with 9.5 in the early 2000s.
Meili says that equals about 40 million to 100 million dollars a year in lost revenue.
NDP finance critic Trent Wotherspoon says the Saskatchewan Party government needs to take stock to ensure the strength and stability of the potash industry for years to come.
He says a review hasn’t been done in a long time and there have only been some minor changes in the royalty structure.
“The Sask. Party had suggested that they were going to do a royalty review with respect to potash in 2015 … but that even-handed review of royalties never happened. They backed away from it,” Wotherspoon said Monday.
Meili said there have been a lot of changes, including a merger in the industry.
“We’ve got new marketing and we’ve got new financial pressures on the province,” he said. “We’ve seen instead of a willingness to review and make sure we’re getting a fair share, a willingness on the part of the Sask. Party to cut health care, cut education, cut essential services.”