OTTAWA — Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Honourable Chrystia Freeland, and the Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade, the Honourable Mary Ng, announced last week that the new Canada Recovery Hiring Program would be available retroactively to June 6, 2021.

The proposed Canada Recovery Hiring Program would help hard-hit businesses hire the workers they need to recover and grow as local economies re-open. The program would provide a subsidy of up to 50 per cent of eligible salary or wages and would be available to eligible employers who have experienced qualifying revenue declines so they can hire more workers, increase workers’ hours, or increase wages. 

This support would afford businesses with certainty that they can take on the extra costs needed to re-hire and be ready to return to growth. 

The Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Small Business also detailed the proposed extension of business support programs that have served as a lifeline to Canadian businesses through the pandemic. This includes the proposed extension of the Wage Subsidy, Rent Subsidy and Lockdown Support until September 25, 2021. These programs are currently set to expire this month. Both the Hiring Program and proposed extensions are part of Bill C-30, the Budget Implementation Act, which is currently before Parliament.

The Hiring Program is designed to interact with the Wage Subsidy. The programs overlap so that, as Wage Subsidy rates gradually decline, eligible employers would still be able to receive the maximum support from the Hiring Program this summer if they hire more workers or increase workers’ hours or wages. This will make it easy for businesses to quickly hire new workers and do so at a pace that works best for them, as different jurisdictions re-open their economies at different paces.

The Business Credit Availability Program and Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program are also being extended to December 31, 2021. Both programs were set to expire on June 30, 2021. 

“Canadian workers and businesses have showed incredible resilience through the pandemic. Our plan to extend business support programs and introduce the new Canada Recovery Hiring Program will help businesses support their workers through the final stretches of the pandemic and hire new workers at a pace that works for them,” says Freeland. “By giving businesses certainty about their support in the weeks and months ahead, they will have the confidence they need to create jobs and invest in growth.”

Support would be available retroactively once Bill C-30 receives Royal Assent. Eligible employers would be able to access support through the CRA and the application portal would be available after Royal Assent. The program is estimated to cost $595 million in 2021-22.

“The extension of existing federal support programs is good news for the meetings and business events industry. Our many businesses and workers are among the hardest hit by the pandemic. Continued federal support is crucial given the long sales cycles for business events and the fact that recovery for our industry will take longer than other businesses within the visitor economy,” says Clark Grue, chair, Meetings Mean Business Canada. “And while we’re pleased with the support offered to employers as part of the Canada Recovery Hiring Program, we would also like to see support for independent businesses within our industry, which include meeting and event planners who do not employ full-time staff, as well as the many industry professionals who work on a contract basis.”


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