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Canada's Finance Minister Jim Flaherty speaks during a news conference in Ottawa March 1, 2013. The slowing Canadian economy means the government will have lower revenues than it initially forecast as it draws up the next budget, which is due soon, Flaherty said on Friday.
Canada's Finance Minister Jim Flaherty speaks during a news conference in Ottawa March 1, 2013. The slowing Canadian economy means the government will have lower revenues than it initially forecast as it draws up the next budget, which is due soon, Flaherty said on Friday.
(CHRIS WATTIE/REUTERS)

Why cracking down on tax cheats will be a priority in the 2013 budget

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Jim Flaherty is a man in need of money.

The finance minister is promising a balanced budget before the next election, but slower economic growth means there’s less revenue coming into Ottawa. He has already announced three years’ worth of spending cuts and seems reluctant to cut much deeper. He has also ruled out tax hikes and cuts to provincial transfers. In short, he is a man with few options.