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Update on Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan from April 29 2020

Canada's two largest provinces, Ontario and Quebec, have this week released plans for the partial re-opening of their economies. Ontario has not provided any concrete dates yet but it is expected that a partial re-opening of the economy will begin in earnest over the second half of May. In Quebec, retail outlets, construction, and manufacturing enterprises will all re-open for business on 11 May.

Panoramic view of Calgary's skyline

At the same time, Prime Minister Trudeau has insisted that the focus remains on preventing the spread of the virus through physical distancing and personal protective equipment and has taken a cautious approach to the re-opening of Canada's economy. It is important to note that policies related to the re-opening of the Canadian economy are the domain of the provinces and their leadership.

The Federal Government has also added new programs to their economic recovery plan to ensure that all types of businesses and entrepreneurs are covered throughout this period and in the early phases of recovery.

Here below are the latest policies created to sustain businesses during the pandemic.

  • The Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses. This program will lower rent by 75 per cent for small businesses that have been affected by COVID-19.
  • The Federal government has invested $250 million to assist innovative, early-stage companies that are unable to access other COVID-19 business supports through the Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP). IRAP provides advice, connections, and funding to help Canadian small and medium-sized businesses increase their innovation capacity and take ideas to market.
  • They are also providing $20.1 million in support for Futurpreneur Canada to continue supporting young entrepreneurs across Canada who are facing challenges due to COVID-19. The funding will allow Futurpreneur Canada to provide payment relief for its clients for up to 12 months.
  • In addition, the Federal government is also providing $675 million to give financing support to small and medium-sized businesses that are unable to access other COVID-19 business supports, through Canada's Regional Development Agencies.

Learn more about Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

How can we support you?

If you have any questions about the Canadian Economic Response Plan, or questions regarding provincial support measures that have been put in place to help businesses weather this crisis, please contact our consultant for Canada Annina Bosshard or the Swiss Business Hub Canada. We are here to support you in these difficult times.

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