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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Canadian Chamber of Commerce: Government delivers what SMEs need to protect jobs

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce today issued the following statement regarding the government’s increase to the wage subsidy program and additional measures to help small businesses:

“As we all deal with the fallout of COVID-19, today is a good day for Canada’s largest employer — small business.  The Prime Minister’s commitment for additional support will help them protect jobs and keep Canadians on the payroll. With these steps, the government has provided a lifeline for hundreds of thousands of small businesses and millions of employees.

We applaud the government’s responsiveness and willingness to work with the business community.  Our members were clear the 10 per cent subsidy previously announced was insufficient. The federal government clearly heard that small businesses needed more and acted decisively.

Today, the federal government has responded to the pleas for more support for SMEs from the Canadian Chamber and other business associations for an increased Temporary Wage Subsidy of 75 per cent, retroactive to March 15.

The federal government also announced:

  • The creation of the Canada Emergency Account that will provide SMEs with loans of up to $40 thousand, interest-free for the first year.    Under certain circumstances, $10 thousand could be considered forgivable. This account, which will be underwritten by the federal government, will be offered through private financial institutions.
  • An additional $12.5 billion available through Export Development Canada and the Business Development Bank of Canada to assist businesses in accessing capital to keep their businesses viable.
  • Deferral of HST/GST remittances and duties/taxes on imports on until June.

The Canadian Chamber recommended the measures announced today on behalf of our members and all Canadian businesses, and particularly SMEs, which are being hit the hardest by this crisis. We will continue to advocate for employers of all sizes during this emergency, including the larger businesses that also need support.

We thank the government for its leadership. We look forward to continuing our partnership to ensure Canada’s businesses get through – and out of – this crisis in the best shape possible.

All Canadians must stand together in these troubling times. With the help of Canada’s governments, our businesses and their employees will definitely do their part.”


“The Prime Minister’s announcement was the right decision at a time when it was urgently needed. It provides hope for hundreds of thousands of businesses and millions of their employees who had been facing a bleak future. It will help ensure that, when this pandemic passes, Canadian businesses and their employees will be there to restart our economy.” – Perrin Beatty, President and CEO, Canadian Chamber of Commerce


About the Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Because Business Matters
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce helps build the businesses that support our families, our communities and our country. We do this by influencing government policy, by providing essential business services and by connecting businesses to information they can use, to opportunities for growth and to a network of local chambers, businesses, decision-makers and peers from across the country, in every sector of the economy and at all levels of government, as well as internationally. We are unapologetic in our support for business and the vital role it plays in building and sustaining our great nation.

For more information, please contact:
Phil Taylor, Managing Director of External Communications, at

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