Business groups urge Trudeau to focus on pandemic recovery in election’s aftermath

Business groups urge Trudeau to focus on pandemic recovery in election's aftermath

Business groups say pandemic recovery should be the newly re-elected Liberal government’s top priority.

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce says politicians must ‘get back to work’ after Monday’s election. It says the problems that faced small businesses prior to the campaign are now more urgent due to the fourth wave of COVID-19.

The Chamber wants targeted support for hard-hit industries like tourism and hospitality. It wants the Trudeau minority government to extend wage subsidies and rent relief programs for businesses still affected by pandemic-related restrictions.

The food service industry is asking for partial debt relief for government-backed loans. Restaurants Canada says eight out of 10 food service operators have taken on debt due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Restaurants Canada also wants help addressing an ongoing labour shortage made worse by COVID-19. It wants immigration programs expanded to help restaurants fill job vacancies.

The Liberal Party promised during the campaign to extend the Canada Recovery Hiring Program. The program is meant to help employers with re-opening by offsetting the costs of hiring more staff or increasing wages.

The tourism industry, another one hit particularly hard by the pandemic, is also reaching out to the Liberals with a plea for help.

“The recovery of Canada’s tourism industry is key to Canada’s overall recovery. We were encouraged to see tourism-specific pledges mentioned in the party platforms during this campaign. It is vital that this once $105 billion industry be recognized as the important economic driver it is.” said Beth Potter, President and CEO of the Tourism Industry Association of Canada. “We look forward to working on an urgent basis with all Parliamentarians to ensure the survival of the tourism industry.”

Among the hopes of the TIAC is that Trudeau’s Liberals will provide the industry with temporary wage and rent support of up to 75% of their expenses while also extending the Canada Recovery Hiring Program to March 31, 2022.


Graham CoxGraham Cox

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