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Manitoba making progress at reducing red tape for businesses

Business owners like you deal with piles of red tape: PST, GST, employment standards, municipal by-laws, payroll taxes, WCB paperwork–the list goes on and on. You tell us red tape holds back your business—dealing with inconsistent information, confusing forms, outdated rules and rude customer service.

CFIB has been a leading voice on the need to reduce red tape for business owners and getting governments across Canada to become more accountable for regulations. That’s why we launched Red Tape Awareness Week in 2010: to showcase the governments making progress and shed light on the ones lagging when it comes to reducing unnecessary rules and red tape on businesses. Red Tape Awareness Week 2018 ran from January 22-26, 2018. 

Progress made on red tape in Manitoba

In January, 2017, Manitoba was the first province to accept CFIB’s 1-for-1 Challenge and legislated a cap on the number of government rules soon after. As every government brings new legislation, regulations pile up over time if there is no mechanism in place to reduce those already in place. CFIB believes the one-for-one law is such a mechanism to safeguard against over-regulation.

Manitoba's Bill 22, The Regulatory Accountability Act and Amendments to the Statutes and Regulations Act, mandates that for every new regulatory requirement created, two existing requirements must be removed (two-for-one rule) until March 31, 2021. It will be replaced by a ‘one-for-one’ rule thereafter. Manitoba’s baseline count of regulatory requirements is also the most comprehensive in Canada and includes government rules found in legislation, regulations, policies, forms, and guidelines. The government found 906,824 regulatory requirements in 12,393 documents, and only 65% were found in forms. 

Since 2016, the Manitoba government has taken many other steps to reduce red tape for business owners from streamlining farm building codes and harmonizing trucking weight limits, to modernizing rules for RV construction and used oil handling.

Manitoba Premier, Finance Minister win CFIB award for leadership in cutting red tape for small business

Every year, we grade governments on leadership and accountability in cutting red tape for small business. Manitoba earned an ‘A’ in 2018 and had the biggest improvement from the previous year – in 2017, it received a ‘D+’. 

Premier Brian Pallister and Finance Minister Cameron Friesen won CFIB’s 2018 Golden Scissors Award, which recognizes leadership in cutting red tape in a meaningful way for small business. The exceptional leadership shown by Premier Pallister and Minister Friesen put Manitoba on track to become a North American leader in reducing red tape and being accountable for regulations.  



CFIB's Laura Jones presents Manitoba's 2018 Red Tape Report Card grade to Deputy Premier Heather Stefanson


Got a red tape headache? 

Do you have an example of a dumb or ridiculous rule that you think should be fixed? We need your examples, big or small, about a confusing process, unclear rules and/or poor customer service. Call us to share your red tape headaches at (204) 982-0817, 1-888-234-2232 or email us at [email protected].


Jonathan Alward, Cameron Friesen


January 31, 2018

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