Montréal, March 18, 2020 ‒ The Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal applauds the Government of Canada’s announcement of measures totalling $82 billion to support businesses, workers and families facing the economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis. This ambitious plan was necessary and will help increase cash flow for businesses and protect as many jobs as possible in a context of economic uncertainty. The decision to close the Canada-U.S. border while maintaining cross-border shipments of goods effectively addresses objectives both for public health and for keeping the North American economy running.
“The aid announced this morning by the federal government is unparalleled in scope,” said Michel Leblanc, president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal. “The injection of $27 billion in direct support to businesses and individuals is a major effort to help them keep their heads above water during this difficult period.”
“By postponing the obligation for companies to pay taxes, the government is giving them essential leeway,” Mr. Leblanc said. “Granting additional employment insurance and emergency aid for self-employed workers will also lend a hand to workers in precarious situations directly affected by the crisis. It will be essential for companies and individuals to gain access to these amounts quickly, that application processes be simple and the processing times short. The Chamber will follow up with member businesses to determine whether the measures announced meet the needs of companies.”
“We recognize the governments’ proactive efforts,” Michel Leblanc said. “In the coming days we need to find solutions to make it possible for essential activities to continue in certain economic sectors. This is particularly the case in the agricultural sector, for which access to foreign temporary workers is essential. Without these workers, Quebec’s agricultural production will be at risk, which would make us dependent on other countries, resulting in a substantial increase in prices and jeopardizing food safety, a situation we would like to avoid at all costs given the context.”
“We support the joint decision by Canada and the U.S. to close the border to all unessential traffic,” Mr. Leblanc said. “We are reassured that this decision does not apply to shipments of goods, limiting the impact on supply chains.”
About the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal (CCMM)
With a network of over 8,000 members, the CCMM is active on two fronts: being the voice of the Montréal business community and delivering specialized services to businesses and their representatives. With its finger on the pulse of current events, it acts on issues that are decisive for the prosperity of the city’s businesses. With the support of the Acclr experts, the CCMM’s goal is to accelerate the creation and growth of businesses of all sizes, at home and around the world.
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Advisor, Media Relations
Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal
Tel.: 514 871-4000, ext. 4042
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