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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: November 19, 2021

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID vaccine authorized for younger children

Today, Health Canada authorized the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech Comirnaty COVID-19 vaccine in children 5 to 11 years of age. This is the first COVID-19 vaccine authorized in Canada for use in this age group and marks a major milestone in Canada’s fight against COVID-19.

Health Canada has authorized a two-dose regimen of 10 micrograms to be administered three weeks apart, which is a lower dose than the 30 micrograms two-dose regimen authorized for people 12 years of age and older.

In keeping with the Department’s commitment to openness and transparency, Health Canada is publishing multiple documents related to this decision, including a high-level summary of the evidence it reviewed.

The Government of Ontario and Niagara Public Health declared their readiness to begin vaccinating 5-11-year-olds with this approved vaccine, but noted that supplies are not yet available, although every 5-11-year-old can be vaccinated before Christmas.

Parents or guardians who have questions or concerns about their child receiving the COVID-19 vaccine are invited to register for a virtual town hall, hosted by Public Health, on Tuesday, Nov. 23 from 7-8 p.m.

Niagara Public Health has a web page of FAQs related to vaccination of children as well as a general FAQ page, both of which will continue to be updated.

Vaccination is one of the most effective ways to help protect ourselves, and our families and communities against COVID-19. Learn more here.

Government of Canada announces adjustments to Canada’s border measures

Effective November 30, 2021, fully vaccinated individuals with right of entry to Canada who depart and re-enter the country within 72 hours of leaving Canada will not have to present a pre-entry molecular test. This exemption is only for trips originating in Canada taken by fully vaccinated Canadian citizens, permanent residents or individuals registered under the Indian Act, who depart and re-enter by land or by air and can demonstrate that they have been away from Canada for less than 72 hours.

The Government of Canada is also announcing that as of January 15, 2022, certain groups of travellers, who are currently exempt from entry requirements, will only be allowed to enter the country if they are fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved for entry into Canada.

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce said that the move put a “one-way door” on the border, noting that the policy is at odds with the advice of the government’s Expert Advisory Panel, which recommended doing away with the tests for fully-vaccinated travellers. The Chamber’s concerns are that the rules permit cross-border shopping for Canadians in time for the busy holiday season, while maintaining punitive restrictions that discourage fully-vaccinated Americans from vacationing or shopping in Canada. At the same time, the Chamber added, business meetings will now increasingly take place in the U.S., not Canada, which is bad news for our beleaguered hotel sector.

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Lower sales at car dealerships led overall retail decline in September

Retail sales were down 0.6% to $56.6 billion in September. The decline was led by lower sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers (-1.6%) as new car dealer sales (-2.8%) continued to struggle amid global supply shortages for semiconductor chips.

Sales decreased in 7 of 11 subsectors, representing 63.5% of retail trade.

The New Motor Vehicle Sales Survey noted a 19% decline in unit sales of new motor vehicles compared with September 2020. This was primarily driven by a decline to light trucks and SUVs where unit sales fell 23% from the year prior. Total unit sales were down 17% compared with September 2019 levels, before the pandemic.

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Reading Recommendations

Trudeau comes up short on U.S. EV tax credits, says will keep pushing


Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau returned to Ottawa on Friday after failing to convince U.S. President Joe Biden to scrap proposed electric-vehicle tax credits that would favor American-based manufacturers, but said he would keep seeking a solution.

Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday passed here the $1.75 trillion domestic investment bill that includes the tax credits, sending it to the Senate where negotiations will continue.

Canada fears the credits will undermine its own efforts to produce electric vehicles (EVs) in Ontario – the country’s industrial heartland – where General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co and Stellantis NV already assemble cars and trucks and plan a pivot to electric.

COVID-19 accelerated many changes impacting rural communities — we need to support their resilience

The Conversation

Rural Canada is vital to the socio-economic fabric of this country.

Rural communities are places of employment, food production, energy generation, resource extraction, environmental stewardship, cultural production and leisure. They are also home to millions of people. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, has illuminated many new and existing inequities, which are shaping the realities of life in rural Canada.

In our work with the Canadian Rural Revitalization Foundation, we co-edited the 2021 State of Rural Canada Report. The report provides a snapshot of key rural issues while also highlighting opportunities, recovery and resiliency in each province and territory.

Rural communities across Canada are facing unprecedented changes — from demographic shifts and economic restructuring to the impacts of climate change and weak rural development policies and programs.

Niagara COVID-19 statistics tracker

Niagara COVID vaccination tracker

Free rapid COVID-19 testing kits are now available to businesses. Visit to learn more and reserve kits for your organization.

Information on government grants, resources, and programs, policies, forms, and posters for download and use, are available here. The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.

Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.

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