Industry Associations Call for More Time to Repay CEBA loans

Published July 24, 2023

July 24, 2023

Sent via email.

The Honourable Chrystia Freeland Deputy Prime Minister

Minister of Finance

Member of Parliament, University—Rosedale, Ontario Department of Finance Canada

90 Elgin Street Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0G5

Subject: Industry Associations Call for More Time to Repay CEBA loans


Dear Minister Freeland:

Industry associations representing hundreds of thousands of businesses across Canada are urging you to extend the current Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) repayment deadline by two years to the end of 2025, or at least by one year, while maintaining access to the forgivable portion.

Almost 900,000 CEBA loans were approved across Canada. Many businesses had no choice but to take on this loan due to circumstances beyond their control. This includes businesses in some of the hardest hit industries such as the retail industry and tourism sector. Mandatory business closures and other government health restrictions left businesses with severe income losses and cash flow issues.

Despite their best efforts, high interest rates, inflation and increased labour costs are making it difficult for small-and-medium size businesses to keep their heads above water, let alone make any dent in the debt many had to take on to survive pandemic restrictions. A recent analysis of over 15,000 Canadian businesses found that inflation, input costs, and interest/debt costs are the three most acute obstacles faced by business (at 56%, 40% and 38%, respectively), and the smaller the firm, the more constrained they are by debt1.

Moreover, recent surveys focussed on CEBA loan-holder companies reveal that:

  • 49% of small businesses are still making below normal revenues2;
  • 50% of Canadian foodservice operators are currently operating at a loss or breaking even compared to 12% pre-pandemic3; and,
  • 45% of Canada’s tourism businesses are likely or somewhat likely to close within the next three years without government intervention into their mounting debt load.4

With each passing day, entrepreneurs who collectively maintain a very considerable workforce, face increasingly daunting financial pressure.

Ottawa needs to act now to extend the CEBA repayment deadline.

Unless the federal government acts quickly to postpone the CEBA repayment deadline, businesses that are unable to repay their CEBA loan in time will lose access to the forgivable portion of up to $20,000, thus further increasing their debt load. Extending the repayment timeline for the CEBA loan without losing access to the forgivable portion would give many small-and-medium size businesses the stability and certainty they need to get back on their feet on a path to prosperity.

We urge you to quickly address this important matter.

Sincerely,

1000 Islands Gananoque Chamber of Commerce
Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce Alberta Chambers of Commerce Alliance de l’industrie touristique du Québec (AITQ)
Allied Beauty Association of Canada Amherstburg Chamber of Commerce Assiniboia Chamber of Commerce Atlantic Chamber of Commerce Inc. Bayfield & Area Chamber of Commerce Beauty United Council of Ontario Better Way Alliance
Black River-Matheson Chamber of Commerce

Bonnyville & District Chamber of Commerce
Brampton Board of Trade Brandon Chamber of Commerce
Breton & District Chamber of Commerce Brighton-Cramahe Chamber of Commerce
British Columbia Chamber of Commerce British Columbia Restaurant and Foodservices Association (BCRFA) Brockville & District Chamber of Commerce
Burlington Chamber of Commerce Burnaby Board of Trade
Business Improvement Areas of British Columbia

Cambridge Chamber of Commerce Campbell River & District Chamber of Commerce
Camrose & District Chamber of Commerce
Canadian Chamber of Commerce Canadian Craft Brewers Association / Association des microbrasseries canadiennes
Canadian Equipment Dealers Association Canadian Federation of Independent Business
Canadian Gift Association Canadian Health Food Association
Canadian Home Builders’ Association Canadian National Alliance for Chiropractic
Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce Carleton Place & District Chamber of Commerce
Centre Wellington Chamber of Commerce
Chaleur Chamber of Commerce Chamber of Commerce Brantford – Brant Chambre de commerce Chibougamau- Chapais
Chambre de commerce de Brome- Missisquoi
Chambre de commerce de Gatineau Chambre de commerce de l’Île d’Orléans Chambre de commerce de la Haute- Gaspésie
Chambre de commerce de la Haute- Matawinie
Chambre de commerce de la MRC de l’Assomption
Chambre de commerce de l’Est de Portneuf
Chambre de commerce de Maniwaki et de la Vallée-de-la-Gatineau
Chambre de commerce de Matane Chambre de commerce de Mékinac Chambre de commerce de Montréal Centre Sud Ouest
Chambre de commerce de Saint-Georges Chambre de commerce de Saint-Martin de Beauce

Chambre de commerce de Val-d’Or Chambre de commerce du Grand Joliette Chambre de commerce du Grand Mont- Tremblant
Chambre de commerce du Haut-Saint- François
Chambre de Commerce du Témiscouata Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Shawinigan
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie des Bois-Francs et de l’Érable
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Les
Moulins
Chambre de commerce et de l’industrie du Haut-Richelieu
Chambre de commerce et de tourisme de Saint-Adolphe-d’Howard
Chambre de commerce et de tourisme de Sainte-Adèle
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Beauharnois Valleyfield Haut-Saint- Laurent
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de la MRC de Montmagny
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de la Rive-Sud
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Laval
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Saint-Félicien
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Thetford Mines
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Vaudreuil-Soulanges
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie du Coeur-du-Québec
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie du Grand Lévis
Chambre de commerce et d’Industrie du Grand Roussillon
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Nouvelle-Beauce
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Région de Mégantic
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Saint-Jérôme métropolitain

Chambre de commerce et d’Industrie Saint-Laurent Mont-Royal
Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Vallée-du-Richelieu
Chambre de commerce et industrie Mont-Joli-Mitis
Chambre de commerce Memphrémagog Chambre de commerce Mont-Saint- Bruno
Chatham-Kent Chamber of Commerce Chetwynd Chamber of Commerce Clarenville Area Chamber of Commerce Cold Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce
Collingwood Chamber of Commerce Conseil du patronat du Québec
Consort & District Chamber of Commerce Crossfield Chamber of Commerce
DQOJ Association of Canada
Drayton Valley and District Chamber of Commerce
Dryden District Chamber of Commerce Eastern Prince Edward Island Chamber of Commerce
Edmonton Chamber of Commerce Electrical Contractors Association of Alberta
Erin Chamber of Commerce Estevan Chamber of Commerce
Exploits Regional Chamber of Commerce Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec
Fédération des pourvoiries du Québec / Quebec Outfitters Federation Inc.
Fitness Industry Council of Canada (FIC) / Conseil canadien de l’industrie du conditionnement physique (CCICP)
Fort McMurray Chamber of Commerce Fort Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce
Fort Saskatchewan & District Chamber of Commerce
Fort St. James Chamber of Commerce Fort St. John and District Chamber of Commerce
Fredericton Chamber of Commerce

Grande Prairie & District Chamber Of Commerce
Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce
Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce
Greater Langley Chamber of Commerce Greater Parkland Regional Chamber of Commerce
Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce
Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce Greater Summerside Chamber of Commerce
Greater Toronto Hotel Association Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce Greater Westside Board of Trade
Grimsby & District Chamber of Commerce Hagersville & District Chamber of Commerce
Halton Hills Chamber of Commerce Hamilton Chamber of Commerce High River Chamber of Commerce
Hinton & District Chamber of Commerce Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador Hospitality Saskatchewan
Humboldt & District Chamber of Commerce
Jasper Park Chamber of Commerce Kamloops & District Chamber of Commerce
Kenora & District Chamber of Commerce Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce
Kivalliq Chamber of Commerce
La Chambre de commerce de Charlevoix Labrador West Chamber of Commerce Lacombe & District Chamber of Commerce
Leamington District Chamber of Commerce
Leduc, Nisku & Wetaskiwin Regional Chamber of Commerce
Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce Lloydminster Chamber of Commerce London Chamber of Commerce

Madoc & District Chamber of Commerce Manitoba Chambers of Commerce Manitoba Lodges & Outfitters Associations (MLOA)
Manitoba Restaurant & Foodservices Association (MRFSA) Melfort Trade Alliance Chamber of Commerce
Melville & District Chamber of Commerce Milton Chamber of Commerce
Minto Chamber of Commerce Mississauga Board of Trade Moose Jaw & District Chamber of Commerce
Morinville & District Chamber of Commerce
Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce
Newcastle and District Chamber of Commerce
Newmarket Chamber of Commerce Nipawin & District Chamber of Commerce North Bay & District Chamber of Commerce
North Perth Chamber of Commerce North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce Northern Ontario Tourist Outfitters Association (NOTO)
Oakville Chamber of Commerce
Okotoks & District Chamber of Commerce Ontario Chamber of Commerce
Ontario Professional Hairstylists Association
Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association (ORHMA)
Ottawa Board of Trade
Owen Sound & District Chamber of Commerce
Oyen & District Chamber of Commerce Parkland Chamber of Commerce Parksville and District Chamber of Commerce
Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce
Perth & District Chamber of Commerce

Picture Butte & District Chamber of Commerce
Pigeon Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce
Pincher Creek & District Chamber of Commerce
Port Hope and District Chamber of Commerce
Prairie Cannabis Ltd.
Prince Albert and District Chamber of Commerce
Prince Rupert and District Chamber of Commerce
Quinte West Chamber of Commerce Red Deer and District Chamber of Commerce
Reflexology Association of Canada Regina & District Chamber of Commerce Regroupement des bijoutiers GEMME Regroupement des SDC du Québec Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia (RANS)
Restaurants Canada
Ridge Meadows Chamber of Commerce Rocky Mountain House and District Chamber of Commerce
Saint John Region Chamber of Commerce Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce Scugog Chamber of Commerce Sherwood Park & District Chamber of Commerce
Simcoe and District Chamber of Commerce
Smithers District Chamber of Commerce Smiths Falls and District Chamber of Commerce
Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce South Surrey and White Rock Chamber of Commerce
St. Andrews Chamber of Commerce St. John’s Board of Trade
St. Paul and District Chamber of Commerce
St. Thomas & District Chamber of Commerce

Surrey Board of Trade
Sussex & District Chamber of Commerce Swan Hills Chamber of Commerce Sylvan Lake Chamber of Commerce Taber & District Chamber of Commerce Taxi Lévis 9000
The Burin Peninsula Chamber of Commerce
The Calgary Chamber of Commerce The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Moncton
The Edson and District Chamber of Commerce
The Greater Barrie Chamber of Commerce
The Parry Sound Area Chamber of Commerce
The Peace River Board of Trade and Chamber of Commerce
The Prince Edward County Chamber of Commerce
The Stettler Regional Board of Trade & Community Development
The West Island of Montreal Chamber of Commerce
The Whitchurch-Stouffville Chamber of Commerce
The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce Thorsby & District Chamber of Commerce Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce Tourism Industry Association of Alberta (TIAA)
Tourism Industry Association of British Columbia (TIABC)
Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC)
Tourism Industry Association of Manitoba (TIAM)

Tourism Industry Association of New Brunswick (TIANB)
Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia (TIANS)
Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO)
Tourism Industry Association of Prince Edward Island (TIAPEI)
Tourism Industry Association of the Yukon (TIAY)
Tillsonburg District Chamber of Commerce
Timmins Chamber of Commerce Tourism NWT
Tourisme et Commerce Rocher-Percé Traditional Chinese Medicine Association of Canada
Travel Nunavut
Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce Truro & Colchester Chamber of Commerce
Tumbler Ridge Chamber of Commerce Valley Chamber of Commerce de la Vallée Valleyview Chamber of Commerce Vegreville & District Chamber Of Commerce
Vermilion & District Chamber of Commerce
Wasaga Beach Chamber of Commerce Weyburn Chamber of Commerce Whitby Chamber of Commerce Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce
Woodstock Chamber of Commerce Yarmouth & Area Chamber of Commerce Yorkton Chamber of Commerce
Yukon Chamber of Commerce

c.c.:

The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

The Honourable François-Phillippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry

The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development

The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister

The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion

The Honourable Mona Fortier, President of the Treasury Board John F.G. Hannaford, Clerk of the Privy Council


1 Canadian Chamber analysis; Statistics Canada, Canadian Survey on Business Conditions (June 2023). https://bdl-lde.ca/wp- content/uploads/2023/06/2023_Q2_CSBC_Report_Final_EN.)

2 Canadian Federation of Independent Business. (2023, May 10). The clock is ticking: Nearly three-quarters of small businesses need more time to repay CEBA loans. Press Release. www.cfib-fcei.ca.

3 Restaurants Canada. (2023, June 23). https://ontheirplate.ca

4 Tourism Industry Association of Canada. (2023, June 23). Two Out of Five Tourism Operators surveyed in Canada Report Being at Risk of Closing. Press Release. www.tiac-aitc.ca

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