Minister Ng highlights importance of small business in Canadian recovery at CanadianSME Small Business Expo

News release

June 22, 2021 – Ottawa, Ontario

Small businesses are the backbone of the Canadian economy and will play a crucial role in Canada’s economic recovery from COVID-19, creating jobs and growth in the months and years to come.

The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade, joined 1,500 business owners, organizations and industry leaders from across the country yesterday to kick off CanadianSME’s Small Business Expo 2021.

During her welcome address, Minister Ng highlighted the government’s continued support of small and medium-sized enterprises, discussing the emergency supports that have helped them pay their bills and keep employees on the payroll during the pandemic. Minister Ng also spoke about the work being done to support small businesses in making a strong economic recovery, calling attention to the Canada Recovery Hiring Program that will help Canadian businesses hire more workers or increase the hours and compensation of existing employees.

As well, Minister Ng noted the need to support small businesses so they can compete in the rapidly advancing digital economy and cited the $4-billion investment to create the Canada Digital Adoption Program that the government announced in Budget 2021.

Minister Ng also recognized the need for an inclusive recovery and economy, mentioning the government’s historic investments in the Black Entrepreneurship Program and the Women Entrepreneurship Strategy, as well as support for Indigenous entrepreneurs.

Lastly, Minister Ng reaffirmed the government’s commitment to supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs through the pandemic and into the economy of the future through the historic investments announced in Budget 2021.


“Our government stepped up to support Canada’s small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing wage and rent subsidies and access to capital so these businesses, the hearts of so many of our communities, could make it to the other side. Now, as we look to recovery, we will continue to stand by Canadians and their small businesses as they invest in themselves, their competitiveness and their futures, be it through adopting digital technologies or hiring new talent.”
- The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade 

Quick facts

  • To support Canadians during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada introduced the largest relief package in our country’s history, including the following major programs for business owners and their employees:

    • The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) is helping businesses cover up to 75% of payroll. Budget 2021 proposed extending CEWS until September 25, 2021.
    • The expanded Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) provides an interest-free loan of up to $60,000, with 33% forgivable if repaid by December 31, 2022. CEBA was extended to June 30, 2021.
    • The Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS), available directly to business owners, covers up to 65% of rent. The Lockdown Support may provide an additional 25%. Budget 2021 proposes extending these relief measures until September 25, 2021.
    • The Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP) offers loans at a fixed interest rate of 4% across all financial institutions for terms of up to 10 years, and the loans are 100% guaranteed by the Government of Canada. Businesses will be able to apply through to December 31, 2021.
    • The Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) has more than $2 billion to support small businesses across Canada that have been unable to access existing relief measures. It is delivered through Canada’s regional development agencies
  • Budget 2021 proposes more funding to help businesses make a strong recovery as the economy safely reopens. Highlights include:

Associated links


Alice Hansen
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

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