Below is a summary of financial support available to producers through the Government of Canada (GoC) regarding the impacts of COVID-19.
Farm Credit Canada
Farm Credit Canada (FCC) has received an additional $5 billion from the GoC to help farmers and agri-food businesses as part of Canada’s response to COVID-19. FCC has received the additional funds in lending capacity to producers, agribusinesses and food processors. This offers increased flexibility to producers who face cash flow issues and to processors who are impacted by lost sales, helping them remain financially strong during this difficult time. FCC has stated they will be collaborating with banks, credit unions and other financial institutions to alleviate industry financial pressure. For additional details, please click here.
Stay of Default announced for eligible farmers
Eligible producers who have an outstanding Advance Payments Program (APP) loan due on or before April 30 will receive a Stay of Default, allowing them an additional six months to repay the loan. This important measure, which represents $173 million in deferred loans, will help keep more money in farmers’ pockets during these critical months. All producers should contact their APP administrator to enquire about their eligibility for the Stay of Default. The new deadlines for outstanding APP loans are September 30, 2020 for 2018 cash advances for cattle. Click here to see list of APP administrators participating in the Stay of Default.
Business Risk Management Programs
Producers will continue to have support under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, with business risk management (BRM) programs, designed to help manage significant financial impacts and risks beyond producers' control. The CCA submitted BRM recommendations to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food for review—to view these recommendations, click here.
We have heard from the Prime Minister, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and GoC officials, that the GoC remains committed to support Canada’s agricultural sector to ensure that producers and businesses have the support they need to provide for their families and all Canadians during this critical time.
The GoC also implemented the following supports pertaining to Canada’s agriculture sector.
The GoC has expanded Export Development Canada’s ability to provide support by loosening rules on the limit for Canada Account transactions to provide loans to businesses if deemed of national interest.
The GoC has allowed businesses to defer until after August 31, 2020 the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September.
Employer Support for Paying Wages
A 75 per cent wage subsidy for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020 has also been announced. This may help businesses to keep and return workers to the payroll. CCA will share more details on eligibility criteria as it becomes available.
Canada Emergency Response Benefit
The GoC has announced an Emergency Response Benefit for workers not eligible to EI and facing unemployment. It includes those self-employed and those forced to close shop due to the virus.
Further details can be found on the GoC website.