Ontario Chamber’s report hard to take seriously

Media release: Toronto Taxi Alliance

TORONTO (August 26, 2015) -- “Whether you call it a ‘sharing economy’ or an ‘underground economy,’ it’s difficult to take the Ontario Chamber of Commerce’s new report seriously when not a single tax-paying, law abiding business service sector was part of the Working Group,” says Sam Moini, spokesperson for the Toronto Taxi Alliance.

“In fact, the individual the report identifies as representing PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Ted Graham, told the group he is an Uber driver. OCC is not being transparent.”

The OCC’s report “Harnessing the Power of the Sharing Economy” lists Air BnB and Uber as committee members, but no one from the ground transportation or other service industries.

“The revenue figures and job creation statistics the report throws around are happy fiction,” says Moini. “Perhaps the sharing economy globally will do $15 billion worth of business in 2015; however, no new demand has been created. This is $15 billion removed from hotels and transportation services that employ full time staff, pay taxes, and are fully regulated.”

Moini notes that the OCC’s first recommendation is to “establish a cross-jurisdictional taskforce.”

“It is unfortunate OCC did not practice what they preach in writing this report,” he notes. “I am sure representatives of the ground transportation and other service industries would have been eager to be part of the Working Group, as we remain eager to have input in regulating the underground economy moving forward.”