CFIB: Expansion Of Canada Emergency Business Account

December 8, 2020

Dan Kelly

BRITISH COLUMBIA –  The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is pleased that the Government of Canada has finally delivered on its commitment to expand the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) by an additional $20,000. The additional loan is now available to business owners who had previously received the original $40,000 loan and a full $60,000 loan is available to those who have not yet applied for CEBA at all.

It is also good news that an additional $10,000 of the new loan amount is forgivable for businesses that pay the loan back by the end of 2022. This follows last week’s encouraging decision to extend the CEBA application deadline to March 31, 2021.

CEBA has been an important lifeline for cash-strapped small businesses, particularly those now facing additional lockdowns or restrictions. A recent CFIB survey found that nearly a quarter of small firms expect they will run out of cash within three months. It is important to ensure that small businesses have access to cash flow for the duration of the pandemic.

CFIB continues to advocate for allowing new businesses to access CEBA and the other federal aid programs. They are currently ineligible if they can’t demonstrate pre-March 2020 earnings or expenses. Other needed CEBA changes include improved access for sole proprietors who may not have a business number and those who do not meet the March 1 requirement for signed contracts for certain non-deferrable expenses.

CFIB has also asked the government to make important fixes to its other programs, including retroactive rent support through the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) for April to September and a Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) top-up for businesses forced to close by public health orders.

CFIB recognizes the work of Deputy Prime Minister Freeland and Small Business Minister Ng in listening to the feedback of small business owners and making important changes to COVID support programs like this one.

Dan Kelly is President, Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB)

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