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Ottawa announces $133 million in new funding for Indigenous businesses

Thursday, June 11, 2020 @ 3:34 PM | By John Chunn

The federal government on June 11 announced $133 million in new funding to support Indigenous business through the COVID-19 pandemic and into recovery.

Of these additional funds, the government says $117 million will reach more community-owned First Nation, Inuit and Métis businesses including microbusinesses, who are not eligible for existing business support measures. Indigenous communities rely on these businesses to provide revenue for important services and to create meaningful jobs.

According to a press release from Indigenous Services Canada, the Indigenous tourism sector is particularly vulnerable to the economic effects of COVID-19. To bolster this industry, the government is announcing a new stimulus development fund that will provide $16 million to support the Indigenous tourism industry. The Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada will administer the fund to businesses across the country that have lost revenue due to COVID-19.

“While our top priority remains the health and safety of individuals, I want to acknowledge the great challenges Indigenous businesses and economies have faced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Indigenous businesses are the driving force of many local economies. With this additional support, Indigenous communities and businesses will have the flexibility they need to respond to their unique economic needs through this difficult time,” said Minister of Indigenous Services Marc Miller.