Small businesses that took out a Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) loan have just over 60 days to repay the loan while securing the forgivable portion of up to $20,000, and many are worried they won’t be able to meet the January 18, 2024, deadline. If government doesn’t extend the repayment deadline, there will be significant consequences to the whole Canadian economy, warns the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).
A majority (87%) of small businesses that took on a CEBA loan said they need a further extension to the end of 2024.
“Extending the forgivable deadline until the end of 2024 would be a key step in alleviating some of the cost pressures facing small businesses,” said Corinne Pohlmann, Executive Vice-President of Advocacy at CFIB. “If businesses fail—and according to our estimates, up to 250,000 small firms may close doors if they lose out on the forgivable portion—there will be a ripple effect on the whole Canadian economy.”
Recent Statistics Canada data showed that the COVID-19 pandemic caused more business closures in one year than the 2008/2009 financial crisis. The number of new business openings in July also reached its lowest level on record, according to Statistics Canada’s latest monthly estimates.
“With small businesses contributing over half of Canada’s GDP, we worry this situation will become worse if the CEBA forgivable deadline is not extended. We’re already seeing a wave of business closures and fewer people wanting to become entrepreneurs,” Pohlmann added.
CFIB has been pushing hard on behalf of small businesses to extend the CEBA forgivable deadline from January 18, 2024, to Dec. 31, 2024.
CFIB garnered over 50,000 signed petitions from small business owners across the country calling on Ottawa for more time. All 13 Canadian premiers also recently sent a letter to Ottawa, joining the growing calls for an extension.
“Finding enough funds to repay the loan in two months is a herculean task for many small business owners right now. Time is slipping away and they’re trying to figure out how they will be able to repay the loan while they’re reeling from inflationary cost pressures and low levels of sales,” said Jasmin Guenette, Vice-President of National Affairs at CFIB. “There’s still a chance to show Ottawa is listening to the urgent concerns of Canada’s small businesses by extending the forgivable deadline to the end of 2024.”
Membership with the CFIB is an included benefit when you join the Fitness Industry Council of Canada (FIC). For more information, visit https://ficdn.ca/memberships.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 95,000 members across every industry and region. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at cfib.ca.