Federal government offers new stream of support for tourism, hospitality, travel, arts and other hard-hit businesses

Excerpt from The Star 

The federal government plans to create a new funding program to help restaurants, tourism companies and other businesses in industries hardest hit by COVID-19.

The Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP), which was announced in the government’s fiscal update Monday, will offer eligible businesses low-interest loans of up to $1 million, with a 10-year term.

The money will be lent by banks or other financial institutions, but guaranteed by the federal government.

“We know that businesses in tourism, hospitality, travel, arts and culture have been particularly hard-hit. So we’re creating a new stream of support for those businesses that need it most — a credit availability program with 100-per-cent government-backed loan support and favourable terms for businesses that have lost revenue as people stay home to fight the spread of the virus,” Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said in her prepared speech to the House of Commons.

The head of the country’s biggest hotel trade association said the new program will help some of her members survive.

“This is a great day for hotels in Canada, and for businesses in the hardest-hit industries,” said Susie Grynol, president and CEO of the Hotel Association of Canada.

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