Minister Chagger marks International Women’s Day with inspiring businesswomen from across Canada

News Release

Ottawa conference provides information, inspiration and support

March 8, 2017 – Ottawa – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Women entrepreneurs make a valuable contribution to our economy and should have access to the opportunities, support and tools that will help them become the leaders of tomorrow. This is the message the Honourable Bardish Chagger, Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism, delivered today—International Women’s Day—to an audience of businesswomen at the 9th annual Women in Business Conference.

In her remarks, Minister Chagger reiterated the Government of Canada’s support for women entrepreneurs and businesswomen and highlighted some of the initiatives currently being undertaken to remove barriers facing women in the workplace. These include the introduction of Bill C-25—legislation aimed at improving the representation of women on corporate boards and in senior management—and the recent creation of the Canada–United States Council for Advancement of Women Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders. The Council will work to ensure equal opportunities for women in the workforce, remove barriers to women’s participation in the business community and promote the growth of women-owned enterprises.

The Minister also provided an update on the Business Development Bank of Canada’s $50-million investment announced at the Canadian Women’s Entrepreneurship Conference last fall, saying that the Bank has already invested in three early-stage women-led technology start-ups.


“Innovation is revolutionizing businesses, institutions and societies, and women are making their own historic contributions to this great change. Our government is investing in growing women-owned businesses and is supporting economic expansion, job creation and prosperity for all Canadians. Canada has the highest rate of women seeking to become entrepreneurs. When we tap into this potential, we’ll be growing the economy for everyone, creating jobs for Canada’s middle class and those working hard to join it.”
– The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism

“There is no greater time to celebrate women than International Women’s Day. Our speakers remind us that we all hold the power to make a difference, to be courageous and to strengthen our collective.”
– Sandra Tisiot, founder, producer and host of the Women in Business Conference

Quick Facts

  • The Women in Business Conference took place on International Women’s Day, a day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.

  • The theme of this year’s conference was “Voices of Women.” Throughout the day, participants had the opportunity to hear first-hand about the experiences of accomplished businesswomen and inspirational leaders from diverse backgrounds.

  • There are nearly 1 million Canadian women business owners who contribute $148 billion annually to the economy.

Associated Links


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

Marie-Emmanuelle Cadieux
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Small Business and Tourism

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

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