Minister Chagger speaks to young business leaders on the importance of entrepreneurship

News Release

Encouraging young business leaders to make the most of the tools available to them will benefit small businesses

November 3, 2016 – Ottawa – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Entrepreneurship and small businesses play a major role in the Canadian economy. This is the message the Honourable Bardish Chagger, Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism, conveyed today to an audience of young entrepreneurs and business community leaders at a lunch hosted by Futurpreneur Canada.

The Minister spoke about various government priorities, such as the Innovation Agenda, and highlighted the government's role in encouraging diversity in entrepreneurship and in supporting the growth of innovative companies. She also spoke about the importance of supporting incubators, accelerators and networks that can help companies start up and scale up.

The Government of Canada recognizes the vital role that high‑impact firms play in creating jobs and generating economic growth. This was reflected in Budget 2016, which proposed federal support to help firms scale up and further their global competitiveness. Budget 2016 also proposed $105 million over five years to support a youth service initiative to help young Canadians gain valuable work and life experience.


"Small businesses are the backbone of the Canadian economy. Creating a more entrepreneurial, innovative economy that involves and benefits all Canadians is our top priority. That is why our government is proud to support organizations like Futurpreneur that provide young entrepreneurs with the resources they need, such as financing and mentorship, to launch and grow the businesses of tomorrow."

– The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism

"Futurpreneur Canada has been supporting young entrepreneurs for 20 years, and our experience shows that these young people are creating jobs, building communities and strengthening Canada's economy. We've been encouraged by the continued support of the Government of Canada, which allows us to equip thousands of young people with the skills, resources and confidence they need to launch and grow their own businesses."

– Julia Deans, CEO, Futurpreneur Canada

Quick facts

  • Small and medium‑sized enterprises (SME) are the foundation of the economy, accounting for 99 percent of all businesses in Canada. In 2015, SMEs employed approximately 10.5 million Canadians in the private sector. SMEs with fewer than 500 employees account for 39 percent of Canada's gross domestic product.
  • In 2015, the Government provided $14 million over two years to Futurpreneur Canada.
  • Futurpreneur Canada is the only national non‑profit organization that provides financing, mentoring and support tools to aspiring business owners aged 18 to 39.
  • Founded in 1996, Futurpreneur Canada has helped over 8,600 young entrepreneurs launch over 7,000 new businesses across Canada, creating nearly 35,000 jobs.

Associated link

Follow Minister Chagger on social media.
Twitter: @MinofSBT
Instagram: minofsbt


James Fitz-Morris
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Small Business and Tourism

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and
Economic Development Canada

Search for related information by keyword
Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: