Learn how Canada is helping global businesses
Invest in Canada is committed to supporting clients and businesses. We are here to provide the most up-to-date information and advice for businesses on COVID-19. You will also find the latest updates from the Government of Canada.
Get valuable COVID-19 business resources from Invest in Canada
- The most relevant government support programs for global investors
- Recent updates, including new programs and additional funding
- Expert advice and insights on choosing Canada for global business expansion
Government support: Canada’s COVID-19 economic response plan for global businesses
As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Government of Canada has taken immediate, significant, and decisive action, including substantial business resources and support for global investors.
Here are a few specific government support programs of interest to firms with FDI-focused activities:
The new Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, which covers 65% of salaries for qualifying businesses, is extended until June, 2021. Eligibility for the subsidy has changed to allow employers with a decline in monthly revenue of less than 30% qualify.
The Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF) offers bridge financing of up to $60 million or more to companies with annual revenues generally $300 million or higher.
The Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP), established to provide more than $10 billion of additional support to mostly small and medium-sized businesses, was expanded to include mid-sized companies with larger financing needs, including loans of up to $60 million per company and guarantees of up to $80 million.
The Strategic Innovation Fund now supports projects to advance Canada’s medical fight against COVID-19, including vaccine and therapy clinical trials.
The Next Generation Manufacturing Supercluster is launching strategic challenges that will be intended to help both in the fight against COVID-19 and in building advanced manufacturing capabilities in Canada. Applications for these funding challenges can be made when these programs are announced. The Supercluster is also running a Rapid Response Funding Program for COVID-19, which has closed its initial call for applications.
The Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program, or HASCAP, opened to businesses in all sectors on February 1, 2021. The program provides loans from $25,000 to $1 million to businesses that show year-over-year revenue declines of 50% or more for any three of the past eight months. Chains are eligible for larger loans of up to $6.25 million.
Canada's Resilience Promises New Opportunities
Resilience is defined as “the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties.”
Time and time again, Canada has shown remarkable resilience in recovering from past economic crises. In the heart of the financial crisis (2009), Canada’s GDP (a key measure of Canada’s economic health) had significantly declined by 3.22%, but it rebounded quickly by increasing by 3.51% in 2010 (exceeding 2007 pre-crisis GDP growth of 1.99%). In terms of FDI, Canada was the only G7 country to display continuous growth in the aftermath of previous recessions.
Frequently asked questions: What you want and need to know.
Is my company eligible to receive federal government support?
The Government of Canada has developed a range of COVID-19 business resources in response to the pandemic. These measures include critical business support initiatives like the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility, which help employers avoid layoffs and the Business Credit Availability Program, which helps companies secure access to credit. There are also support programs for individual industries. This tool can help you understand what programs are most relevant to your business and whether your organization is eligible. It will also walk you through the process.
How can Invest in Canada support my company’s investment or expansion into Canada?
Invest in Canada provides tailored and confidential services that make it easier for global companies to choose Canada. We provide a range of investment support options, introductions and help to refine a roadmap to investing in Canada.
What do the changes to Foreign Investment Reviews mean for companies looking to do business in Canada?
Canada remains open to investment that benefits Canadians. The recently announced enhancements to the Investment Canada Act will allow the Government of Canada to ensure inbound investments do not introduce risks to Canada’s economy or national security during a fragile time. The many robust mechanisms regulating investments in the country will continue to ensure that foreign direct investments can keep on coming into Canada safely, stimulating our economy and contributing to prosperity for Canadians.
What impact do travel restrictions have on trade and business?
We know that many businesses depend on the free flow of trade and the integrated supply chain between Canada and the United States. The flow of goods, business and essential travel has been permitted to continue since the temporary border restrictions came into force on March 20, 2020. While business travel can continue, we recommend individuals consult Global Affairs Canada’s Global Travel Advisory. For travel restrictions and requirements, visit Flying Canada Checklist.
Our organization manufactures personal protective equipment (PPE) and other medical equipment needed for COVID-19 response. Are there opportunities to supply the Government of Canada or Canadian provinces and territories?
The Government of Canada is implementing Canada’s Plan to Mobilize Industry to fight COVID-19. If your company manufactures products and services needed in the COVID-19 response, visit Buyandsell.gc.ca. You can view products and services that are needed, sign up for alerts on new procurement opportunities, and submit a form identifying your company’s capacity.
Are Immigration and Citizenship applications still operational and being processed during COVID-19?
Immigration and Citizenship Canada facilitates several programs that allow companies doing business in Canada to bring in the right international talent to fit their needs. Because of COVID-19, IRCC has indicated that there are delays in the processing of applications. IRCC is still processing GSS eligible work permits, but they may take longer than 2 weeks. For updates on specific programs, we recommend you visit their website.
My company is growing and hiring in Canada during COVID-19. How can I identify the right talent?
Doing business in Canada gives your company access to one of the highest skilled workforces and talent pipelines in the world. While COVID-19 has presented new challenges in growing your team, the Government of Canada has several programs that can help. Mitacs works with companies to find the right people and solve innovation challenges.
Are COVID-19 response measures and guidelines for operating businesses the same across Canada?
While federal COVID-19 business resources and support programs apply across the country, we recommend you check with provinces and municipalities to understand rules that may apply to your business.