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Canada extends wage subsidy policy till December

Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, brings relief to immigrants by announcing extension of Canada’s wage subsidy policy till the end of this year. According to Trudeau, Canada’s economy has to reopen and this extension must provide great support and certainty to businesses.

This announcement must be relieving to those who were losing their job due to Coronavirus lockdown. This will help both immigrants and Canadians to stand on their feet again. The discussion has been going on with the territories and provinces about safe reopening.

In March, the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy program was launched considering the COVID-19 pandemic to help relieve increased financial burdens on businesses.

The program was also intended to incentivize businesses which were the worst hit by lockdown by rehiring workers who were laid off and to avoid layoffs in future. The government was expecting to do this by providing around $847 every week to businesses which were eligible, i.e. wage subsidy of 75%. Nonprofits and businesses were usually able to claim with revenue loss of over 30%. It was 15% for March.

While appreciating CEWS extension, the business community is still in a critical stage for being eligible and hoping more and more businesses can be eligible for that. At the same time, the government has also announced to adjust the eligibility needs this week. The CEWS has been extended for the second time followed by a 12-week extension on May 15.

Canada has paid off $18 billion or more to the businesses until July 6 as part of federal wage policy. Around 99.1% applications have been approved, i.e. 581,800 applications in total out of 587,600. The CEWS budget has been raised to $82.3 billion last week, which is significantly larger than $45 billion which was announced in the beginning. A lot of beneficiaries of CERB have been coming back to work with the reopening of the economy.