The Government of Canada has deployed a number of measures to help small-and-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) deal with the impacts of COVID-19 on their businesses. Building on these measures, with a focus on manufacturing, technology and tourism in southern Ontario, FedDev Ontario has released the details of a new fund for SMEs previously ineligible for financial relief programs.
The $962 million Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) will be delivered nationally through regional development agencies (RDAs), with $252.4 million available to support southern Ontario businesses. The RRRF provides financial relief in the form of interest-free loans to support operating costs of SMEs whose business revenues have been impacted by COVID-19.
The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, announced that southern Ontario businesses that are unable to access other existing measures can now apply for RRRF support through FedDev Ontario, the RDA for southern Ontario. Working with key partners like Community Futures Development Corporations on this initiative, this Fund aims to help SMEs retain employees, pay their rent and access capital to manage their bills.
The RRRF is a targeted effort to maintain business prosperity, specifically for manufacturing, technology and tourism employers, as well as major employers in underrepresented communities in rural and remote areas.
“During a time of unprecedented uncertainty, our Government has worked hard to push out relief measures for families and workers across Canada. Southern Ontario’s entrepreneurs are no exception to the need for support, and the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund is here to help keep many of our businesses and main street stores operating and assist them in preparing for economic recovery,” said Kate Young, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (FedDev Ontario).
More information on the Fund is available on the FedDev Ontario website.