COVID-19 Response Update 7

We are going to do our best to continue providing updates on a daily basis, weekends included. Please feel free to reach out should you have any questions that we might be able to help find you answers for.

Our Operations
Please note that we will not be staffing our office. We will be working from home, if you need to get in touch with us please email or call Rick on his cell phone at 902-740-5251


Online Meeting

Join us for a conversation with regards to the current COVID-19 situation in our region. Local professionals and elected officials will be joining us as well. Bring your questions, we don't promise to have all the answers but we hope to be able to work together to navigate our way through this.


From Province of Nova Scotia

Nothing new that affects business.

Additional Resources:
Government of Canada:
Government of Canada toll-free information line 1-833-784-4397
Fact sheet about cleaning and disinfecting for businesses:


Information from Atlantic Chamber of Commerce

ACC CEO, Sheri Somerville had a call with the Hon. Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages to provide feedback from the business community. Sheri conveyed that businesses are appreciative of the initial measures but that they are indicating more support is needed regarding creating immediate cash flow and that there is a great deal of uncertainty and confusion surrounding program availability, accessibility and eligibility among businesses. 

Some of the suggestions put forth to the Minister included: 

  • Not increase debt load of SMEs. 
  • Increase the wage subsidy from 10 to 50 or 75% (similar to Denmark).
  • Payroll taxes holiday for at least 60 days. 
  • Asking Government to work with banks on other relief they can give on loans, mortgage payments, zero or low-cost lines or credit, interest-free credit card period, etc., as well as Merchant fee relief. 
  • Providing HST Rebates or deferrals to help cash flow. 
  • Keeping Federal and Provincial Government supplier and funding contracts going. 
  • Addressing TFW entry/access re: flights and border crossings.
Minister Joly appreciated all of the feedback and indicated that they are working on filling the information gaps to help people navigate the new measures, as well as on the next phase of measures.

Atlantic Chamber has created COVID-19 Business Resource & Information page


Resources from the Canadian Chamber of Commerce

The Canadian Payroll Association has shared from FAQ's that may be of interest. You can access that information here: Payroll & COVID-19 FAQ's


Summary of Provincial Initiatives to Support Small Businesses as of March 23, 2020
Effective immediately, government will invest $161 million to address cash flow and access to credit for small and medium-sized businesses in Nova Scotia.  

Changes to the Small Business Loan Guarantee Program  (administered through credit unions) include:
For businesses that currently have loans guaranteed through this program:
  • deferring principal and interest payments until June 30
For businesses needing additional credit/liquidity
  • enhancing the program to make it easier for businesses to access credit up to $500,000
  • For businesses that would not qualify for a loan, the provincial government will guarantee the first $100,000

Government will defer payments  until June 30 for:
all government loans, including those under the
  • Farm Loan Board
  • Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board
  • Jobs Fund
  • Nova Scotia Business Fund
  • Municipal Finance Corp.
  • Housing Nova Scotia.
small business fees, including:
  • business renewal fees (a list of fees will be posted online early this week)
  • workers compensation premiums

Further measures include:
  • small businesses which do business with the government will be paid within five days instead of the standard 30 days
  • the province will suspend payments on Nova Scotia student loans for six months, from March 30 to Sept. 30. This is automatic, students do not have to apply
  • ensuring more Nova Scotians can access the internet to work from home, by providing $15 million as an incentive to providers to speed up projects under the Internet for Nova Scotia Initiative and complete them as soon as possible

Update on Government of Canada initiatives to support small businesses

  1. WCB payments do not need to be made until June 30 
  2. Corporate income tax payments can be deferred until September 1, 2020 – no interest or penalties on late installments in that period.
  3. Federal temporary wage subsidy in place for 3 months – for wages paid between March 18 and June 20 th . Reduce income tax (NOT CPP OR EI) remittance by 10% of gross wages to a maximum of $1,375 per employee, total maximum $25,000. Continue to deduct tax, CPP and EI from employees as usual. Available to small business (CCPC, under $16M taxable capital), NPOs and charities:

 Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the Canadian economy. During this extraordinary time, the Government of Canada is taking strong action to help Canadian businesses as COVID-19 is affecting them, their employees and their families.

The Government and public health officials are urging all Canadians to:

For businesses, this means: 

Four key considerations for businesses

Free online webinar
How to cope with the impacts of COVID-19 on your business

March 25, 2020
12:00 p.m. (EDT)

The spread of COVID-19 poses important challenges to Canadian businesses. With the situation constantly evolving, you need to be prepared for any disruptions. Join BDC experts as they share short-term economic perspectives and advice on how to manage through the crisis.

One of our fellow Atlantic Chambers has had members ask for help with signs/posters to use in their business.

Here are three should you need them. If you need help creating others please let us know.
To help businesses prepare for and manage the COVID-19 escalation in Canada, the Canadian Chamber has developed a brief guide source from a number of best practice documents and designed to assist business planning and continuity efforts.

Please review all of these resources to help you plan.


Nova Scotians can find accurate, up-to-date information, handwashing posters and fact sheets at  .

Anyone who has travelled outside of Canada or has been in close contact with someone who has travelled and are experiencing fever (above 38 C) and/or new cough should complete the online questionnaire before calling 811. The online questionnaire can be found at:

Government of Canada:
Government of Canada toll-free information line 1-833-784-4397 Nova Scotia Public Health offices:

New resources/Nouvelles ressources :
For help understanding the definition of essential services across borders and to understand what documentation will be required at the Canada – US border: Pour des définitions et de l’information sur des services essentiels et la documentation requise à la frontière :
·          Canada Border Services Agency has established a toll free line, staffed 24/7, to answer specific questions about Border Crossing:  1-800-461-9999  from within Canada, and 1 -204-983-3500 or 1-506-636-5064  from outside Canada. 
·         L’Agence canadienne des services frontaliers a établi une ligne sans frais, 24 heures sur 24, pour des questions sur la frontière : 1 -800-461-9999  en provenance du Canada, et 1 -204-983-3500 ou 1-506-636-5064  de l’extérieur du Canada
Canada Revenue Agency - Helping Canadians with the economic impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic / l’Agence du revenu du Canada - Aider les Canadiens avec l'impact économique de la pandémie de COVID-19
Exemptions to travel restrictions to protect Canadians and support the economy / Exemptions aux restrictions de voyage afin de protéger les Canadiens et d’appuyer l’économie

Prime Minister announces support for farmers and agri-food businesses under Canada’s response to COVID-19 / Le premier ministre annonce un soutien pour les agriculteurs et les entreprises agroalimentaires dans le cadre de la réponse du Canada à la COVID-19

Expedited access to disinfectants, hand sanitizers and personal protective equipment to help limit the spread of COVID-19, as well as swabs for testing / Accès accéléré aux désinfectants, aux antiseptiques pour les mains et à l'équipement de protection individuelle pour aider à limiter la propagation de COVID-19, ainsi qu' aux écouvillons pour les tests

BDC Webinar (March 25 th ) How to cope with the impacts of COVID-19 on your business / Comment faire face aux impacts de la COVID-19 sur votre entreprise

External Links/Liens externes: 
Save Small

The Canadian Franchise Association (CFA) is providing regular Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates and resources for the CFA member community to stay informed and be prepared.

Key Information Tools / Outils impoortants: 
Business Credit Availability Program/ Programme de credit pour les entreprises
Resources for Canadian businesses: COVID-19 / Ressources pour les enterprises canadiennes: COVID-19

Call to Action: Canadian manufacturers needed to help combat COVID-19 / Appel aux fournisseurs canadiens: Aidez à combattre la COVID-19
COVID-19 Economic Response Plan Announcements/Annonces sur le plan économique face au COVID-19:
Prime Minister announces more support for workers and businesses through Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan / Le premier ministre annonce un soutien supplémentaire aux travailleurs et aux entreprises grâce au Plan d'intervention économique du Canada pour répondre à la COVID-19
Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan / Plan d'intervention économique du Canada pour répondre à la COVID-19
Stay Connected/Soyez informés
Canada Business App – Appli Affaires Canada : .
COVID-19 subscription for Public Health Updates/Inscription pour les mises à jour sur la santé publique:
Business Supports/ Appui aux entreprises :
Department of Finance - Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan: Support for Canadians and Businesses / Ministère des Finances : Plan d'intervention économique du Canada pour répondre à la COVID-19

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Resources for Canadian businesses / Maladie à coronavirus (COVID-19) : Ressources pour les entreprises canadiennes
Work-Sharing Program - Temporary special measures / Programme de travail partagé - Mesures spéciales temporaires:

Canada Revenue Agency - Helping Canadians with the economic impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic / l’Agence du revenu du Canada - Aider les Canadiens avec l'impact économique de la pandémie de COVID-19
What Canada’s Regional Development Agencies are doing to help business during the COVID-19 pandemic/ Ce que font les agences de développement régional (ADR) du Canada pour aider les entreprises pendant la pandémie de COVID-19 
English :  HTML  -  PDF version
French:  HTML  -  Version PDF
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) – Employment and Social Development Canada/Emploi et développement social Canada – maladie à COVID-19

Export Development Canada COVID-19/Exportation et développement Canada
Business Development Bank of Canada – Banque de développement du Canada

Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Chambre de commerce du Canada
World Health Organization COVID-19 - Business and Employees / Organisation mondiale de la santé – entreprises et employés
Council of Canadian Innovators – COVID-19 Slack Channel (you must create an account)
English: Business Resource Hub:
Canadian Federation of Independent Business – Fédération canadienne de l’entreprise indépendante
Uber Eats

Innovative Medicines Canada
Innovative Medicines Canada: Statement on Canada’s Drug Supply / Déclaration portant sur l’approvisionnement en médicaments : IMC