New Brunswick — After Thursday’s new details about Irving Oil offloading millions into a Bermuda tax haven, the provincial government has said that they see no legal issue with the practice, and, in fact, encourage all New Brunswickers to take advantage of such loopholes.
In an interview this morning, Premier Blaine Higgs reiterated that the Irvings’ actions do not violate any provincial tax regulations.
“What they’re doing is not against any law that I’m aware of,” he said. “So I see no problem with it.”
One CBC reporter suggested that it maybe ought to be illegal, and that the province should take steps to prevent such tax-evading practices.
“I wouldn’t even know where to begin pursuing law like that,” he explained to reporters on the steps of the New Brunswick legislature.
One of the biggest concerns is the large government subsidies that the province continues to provide the organization, despite not sharing in the success of their programs. The Conservative government said that they have no plans to halt or alter these subsidies amid these revelations.
“You act like we don’t give the average working person subsidies, too,” said Higgs. “Give me a break. Whenever Irving has temporary layoffs, we continue to pay a portion of everybody’s salaries with CERB so that they can be on call again when the company decides they want them. Think about it, who does that benefit? That’s right! The Irvin– I mean, the workers!”
Finance Minister Ernie Steeves said that “everyone is encouraged to take advantage of what opportunities are out there” to reduce their taxes.
“Despite what some people might think, the Irvings are not treated as exceptions. All New Brunswickers are allowed to funnel their millions of dollars through to a Bermuda banking system.”
But this, The Manatee was quick to point out, would require a number of elite contacts within global banking networks, as well as a great deal of initial capital for transport, accounting and political palm-greasing.
“Don’t worry about it,” said Steeves, nodding as though he were actually listening. “That’s all deductible.”