Meetings Mean Business Canada Applauds Targeted COVID-19 Support Measures
The federal Liberals have made good on an election promise to support Canada’s visitor economy with new government measures specifically targeting our hardest-hit businesses and designed to boost job creation and stimulate economic recovery.
“Canada’s visitor economy is facing a tough winter after travel and mass gathering restrictions hampered our businesses through most of 2021,” says Meetings Mean Business Canada chair, Clark Grue. “As a member and supporter of the Coalition of Hardest Hit Businesses, Meetings Mean Business Canada has worked tirelessly alongside our coalition partners to advocate for continued support measures, including tailored programs for hardest-hit businesses. We applaud the new initiatives, as well as a new standardized Canadian proof of vaccination to help streamline both domestic and international business travel.”
The Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program would provide support through the wage and rent subsidy programs, to hotels, tour operators, travel agencies and restaurants, with a subsidy rate of up to 75%.
The Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program would provide support to other businesses that have faced deep losses, with a subsidy rate of up to 50%.
Businesses that face temporary new local lockdowns will be eligible for up to the maximum amount of the wage and rent subsidy programs, during the local lockdown, regardless of losses over the course of the pandemic.
These programs will be available until May 7, 2022, with the proposed subsidy rates available through to March 13, 2022. From March 13, 2022, to May 7, 2022, the subsidy rates will decrease by half.
In announcing the new programs, Chrystia Freeland, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, said the new measures will cost $7.4 billion between October 24, 2021 and May 7, 2022, and moves government support programs away from the very broad-based support that was appropriate at the height of lockdowns to more targeted measures that will provide help where it is needed.