British Columbia

B.C. tax changes affecting sugary drinks, Netflix, vaping products come into effect April 1

The changes include the elimination of the provincial sales tax exemption for carbonated beverages that contain sugar, natural sweeteners or artificial sweeteners.

Digital software and telecommunication services, vape products also affected

As of April 1, sugary drinks will no longer be exempt from B.C.'s provincial sales tax. (Jeff Chiu/Associated Press)

Tax changes targeting sugary drinks and e-commerce services based outside of B.C. will come into effect on April 1 after being delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The B.C. government says the changes include the elimination of the provincial sales tax exemption for carbonated beverages that contain sugar, natural sweeteners or artificial sweeteners.

The tax will apply to all beverages dispensed through soda fountains or similar equipment, along with all beverages dispensed through vending machines.

The government says the move is supported by health professionals.

The second tax change will apply to those selling digital software and telecommunication services, who will be required to collect the PST on sales to B.C. customers if they have revenue in the province of more than $10,000.

The government will be collecting provincial sales tax of seven per cent from a greater number of businesses in the digital economy.

The province estimates the tax will generate $11 million for the 2020/2021 fiscal year and $16 million for the following fiscal year. 

All Canadian sellers of vapour products, such as vape pens, will also be required to register to collect the sales tax on all online or mail-order sales to B.C. customers as part of the new measure.

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