The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives is pretty pleased with the additional supports put in place by Ottawa to help small and medium-sized businesses.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Announced today (Friday) payroll support has been raised from 10 to 75-percent to help employers cover salaries.

In addition, the federal government launched the Canada Emergency Business Account which allows companies to apply for loans up to 40-thousand dollars, interest-free for a year.

BC Senior Economist Marc Lee says these measures put us in line with other countries.

“In terms of the wage subsidies themselves, it puts us in league with other countries like Denmark, the Netherlands, Ireland, New Zealand, South Korea who have all implemented wage subsidy programs.”

“Businesses are facing dramatic drop-offs in their revenues but they’re expenses still keep coming forward, so what we have seen from the government so far is a number of measures around deferrals.”

Lee believes the message from the government is simple.

“We don’t want businesses to fail, we don’t want businesses to sever relationships with employees if they don’t have to because ultimately, this is more than just the bricks and mortar and the people who are there, it’s about networking and relationships.”

“I think this just compliments all of those very well and basically says to businesses, we will give you 25-cent dollars to keep workers on with the idea that we can bridge our way through the crisis and then reboot on the other side.”

The government is also waiving GST & HST payments and import and export duties until June.