Canadians fight new duty-free limits, query difference in supplier prices
Canadian merchants are taking a second look at their retail operations, as new duty-free limit changes could adversely affect those north of the U.S.-Canada border.
The limits are set to change on June 1, with an increase from $50 to $200 for stays longer than 24 hours and from $400 to $800 for visitors who remain in the U.S. for more than 48 hours.
As a result, Canadian retailers are looking to industry associations to help them keep consumers in the country, The Montreal Gazette reports. One organization, the Surrey Board of Trade, has partnered with Chambers of Commerce in border cities to investigate why Canadian retailers pay higher wholesale prices to suppliers, which inevitably raises prices on the consumer side.
"The Canadian dollar has really remained at par with the U.S. dollar for many years, but retailers pay up to 50 percent percent more for the same products,'' Paul Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade, told the paper. "We say the federal government needs to take a look at this seriously and research why Canadian retailers pay that much more for milk and butter and that type of thing than a U.S. retailer.''
For U.S. border retailers, the change in duty-free limits was welcome news, as an influx of Canadian shoppers could help businesses further boost the strengthening economy.
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