To assist businesses dealing with COVID-19, we’ve created this resource page which contains all the information on business supports announced by the Federal, Provincial and Municipal levels of Government. We’ve provided details and access to links below.

Please check back frequently as we will update this page on a regular basis with information as further announcements are made.                                                   
We have also created a page with business tips from our members and the community.

Federal Government Measures:

The Federal Government has taken a number of measures to try and assist businesses through this time.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

The Canadian Government has provided further details about the Government wage subsidy and other steps being taken to assist businesses during the COVID-19 crisis which totals around $107 billion and up to 5% of GDP.  The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy has been extended to December 2020, more details will be provided once they are announced.

  • The subsidy will cover 75% of a salary up to the first $58,700 earned by an employee and up to $847 a week.
  • Companies will be able to compare their decreases in gross revenue either between the average revenue of January and February 2020 or the corresponding month of 2019.
  • For these comparative periods, businesses will have to demonstrate at least a 30% decrease in gross revenue.
  • Companies will need to reapply each month to receive the subsidy.
  • This system will be flexible as the government recognizes it will be difficult for businesses to show this difference, further details on this will be provided in the coming days.
  • The subsidy applies to companies of all sizes with employee numbers not an eligible factor.
  • Not-for-profits/charities are also included.
  • Businesses will need to attest that they are doing what they can to pay the other 25% of salaries for employees.
  • The government has advised that companies should rehire employees if possible.
  • Applications can be made through the CRA website, with the portal and fund payments being ready in 3-6 weeks.
  • The payout will then be made to a direct deposit system, which is already used by 50% of companies in Canada.

Applications for the Wage Subsidy will open on April 27th through the CRA website.

For further information on the wage subsidy follow this link.

Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF)

  • A bridge financing program for large businesses to help them keep employees on the payroll.
  • Will provide support to employers with annual revenues of more than $300 million, who are unable to secure credit from regular financial institutions.
  • Companies will need to disclose their environmental plans to secure the loan.
  • Companies from all sectors are eligible to apply.

See further information on LEEFF here.

Additional Small Business Support

  • $962 million to regional development agencies and community futures network.
  • This fund will help businesses that don’t qualify for the Canada Emergency Wage subsidy and those who don’t have a relationship with traditional banks.
  • $270 million to the Futurepenuer and industrial research assistance programs which will support start-ups and new companies
  • $500 million to heritage Canada to assist the Arts culture and sports sectors.
  • This fund will aim to provide wage support to those experiencing liquidity problems within this sector.

Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance

  • Rent will be lowered by 75% for SMEs affected by COVID-19 and paying $50,000 or less in rent.
  • The Federal and Provincial Government covers 50% of this reduction and landlords w cover the other 25%.
  • This assistance is available to qualifying SMEs until July 31st.
  • Charities and non-profits are also covered during the program.
  • The CECRA provides forgivable loans to commercial property owners to enable them to lower the rent of tenants.
  • The Ontario Government has announced a suspension on commercial evictions for CECRA-eligible businesses between June 3rd and August 31st.
For more information about CECRA click here.

Business Credit Availability Program

The Canadian Government has used the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC) to provide $65 billion of additional funding to businesses. The program includes:

Canada Emergency Business Account

  • The new Canada Emergency Business Account will provide interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits,
  • To qualify, these organizations need to demonstrate they paid between $20,000 to $1.5 million in total employment income in 2019.

Loan Guarantee for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises

  • EDC is working with financial institutions to issue new operating credit and cash flow term loans of up to $6.25 million to SMEs.

Co-Lending Program for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises

  • BDC is working with financial institutions to co-lend term loans to SMEs for their operational cash flow requirements.
  • Eligible businesses may obtain incremental credit amounts of up to $6.25 million through the program.

These programs will be available three weeks after March 27, and interested businesses should work with their current financial institutions.

Mid-Market Financing Program:

This program is targeted at companies with annual revenues in excess of approximately $100 million and up to $500 million.

  • Provides a loan of $12.5 million to $60 Million and is available until September 30, 2020
  • Companies need to prove that they have been negatively impacted, directly or indirectly, by COVID-19

Read more about the program here.

The Business Development Bank (BDC) can assist you if you are either an entrepreneur or a small business with these three options. To contact the BDC, either reach them at their financing request page or through their toll-free contact number at 1-877-232-2269 (Monday to Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.).

The Export Development Canada is designed to assist exporting companies with relief options. You can reach them by emailing, calling 1-800-229-0575 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, or submitting an inquiry online.

Regional Relief and Recovery Fund:

The Federal Government has announced the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund which will provide financial support to SMEs that are unable to access other federal COVID-19 relief measures. Eligible SMEs in Southern Ontario will be able to apply for this financial assistance through FedDev. Read the full information on the RRRF here.

Canada Emergency Response Benefit

The Government of Canada has announced a monthly Canada Emergency Benefit. The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is a taxable benefit that will provide:

  • CERB provides $2,000 a month, for up to four months, for workers who lose their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • CERB is a simpler and more accessible combination of the previously announced Emergency Care Benefit and Emergency Support Benefit.
  • This program is specifically aimed at workers who would not normally be eligible for EI.
  • This program also applies to self-employed workers, seasonal workers and those who have recently run out of EI. People who make less than $1,000 a month due to reduced work hours will also qualify.

Visit the government website to learn more about CERB.

Tax Assistance

Deferral of Sales Tax Remittance and Customs Duty Payments

Businesses, including self-employed individuals, can now to defer the following until June 30, 2020

  • Payments of the Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST)
  • Customs duties owing on their imports.
  • The deferral will apply to GST/HST remittances for the February, March and April 2020 reporting periods for monthly filers;
  • January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020 reporting period for quarterly filers;
  • For annual filers, the amounts collected and owing for their previous fiscal year and installments of GST/HST in respect of the filer’s current fiscal year.
  • For GST and customs duty payments for imported goods, the deferral will include amounts owing for March, April, and May.
The City of Vaughan has extended it’s a Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT) until September 1st, 2020. Read more here.

Deadline Extensions

  • The 2020 tax deadline has been extended to June 1st, 2020.
  • Payment deadline for those who owe taxes has been deferred until after August 31, 2020.

The Government of Canada has launched a dedicated page for Canadian businesses to provide them with the information and resources to navigate the challenges of COVID19 which can be accessed here.

Provincial Government Measures:

The Government of Ontario has released its 2020 Action Plan responding to COVID-19. Some of these benefits include:

  • Setting electricity prices for small business time-of-use customers at the off-peak price, 24 hours a day for 45 days.
  • Cutting taxes for employers through a temporary increase to the Employer Health Tax (EHT) exemption.
  • Introduction of the Regional Opportunities Investment Tax Credit, a new corporate income tax which will support regions lagging in employment growth.
  • Providing five months of interest and penalty relief for businesses to file and make payments for the majority of provincially administered taxes.
  • Deferring the upcoming June 30 quarterly municipal remittance of education property tax to school boards by 90 days. This will allow municipalities flexibility to provide property tax deferrals to residents and businesses.

Read more here.

Provincial Framework for Re-Opening the Economy

The Provincial Government has announced the first stage of the framework for re-opening the economy. Multiple businesses across several sectors will be able to re-open under strict health and safety guidelines.

  • See the Essential Business list here.
  • See the Government health and safety guidelines for re-opening here.
  • See which businesses are allowed to open here.
  • Read stage one of the re-opening framework here.
  • Access Road to Retail Recovery Guide here.
  • Read the Re-Opening Guide for Restaurants here.
  • Submit your re-opening plans and ideas to the Ontario Jobs and Recovery Committee here.

Ontario Together Fund

The Ontario government is launching a new $50 million Ontario Together Fund to help businesses provide innovative solutions or retool their operations in order to manufacture essential medical supplies and equipment.

For further information, visit the Ontario Together portal

Additional resources:

  • To see the announcement of the Ontario Virtual Action Centre please click here.
  • The Government has changed rules on the Work-Sharing Program. Details here.
  • The Government of Canada’s Covid-19 Economic Plan can be accessed here.
  • The City of Vaughan has introduced measures to protect the local economy. See more here.
  • The Canadian Chamber’s Business Pandemic Preparedness Guide can be accessed here.

For up-to-date public health information about COVID-19:

Check out the business tips page we have created which contains information on resources sent to us by our members. If you have an informative business tip that would be helpful to share with the Vaughan business community, please send it to us at