Support for Businesses

As the COVID-19 situation evolves, we know that these are times of uncertainty and that every day brings new challenges and new concerns. We’re here to reassure you that we’re available to help our Downtown business community and we’ll play a key role in keeping you up to date with the latest information – in whatever way we can.  


Government of Canada

The federal government’s Resources for Canadian Business page provides one-stop info for business and employees.  Read more here. 

Corporate Income Tax
• The Alberta government has deferred corporate income tax balances and installment payments from March 19 until August 31, 2020. Read more here. 

Utility Bills
• The Alberta government has provided support measures to allow commercial customers to defer electricity and natural gas bill payments for the next 90 days, regardless of service provider. Read more here. 

Business Loans and Credit
• The federal government has announced that they will increase the credit available to small, medium, and large Canadian businesses. A new Business Credit Availability Program will provide more than $10 billion of additional support to businesses experiencing cash flow challenges through the Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Canada. Read more here.

•The federal government announced that the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) will lower the Domestic Stability Buffer by 1.25% of risk-weighted assets, effective immediately. This action will allow Canada’s large banks to inject $300 billion of additional lending in to the economy. 

• ATB Financial small business customers can apply for a payment deferral on loans and lines of credit for up to 6 months.
• ATB Financial small business customers can access additional working capital.
• ATB Financial agriculture and other business customers can access support on a one-on-one basis. Read more here. 
• Customers of other banks should check with their bank provider, as Canada’s large banks have confirmed support, but have not yet released details. Read more here.

Business Tax
• The City of Edmonton is examining business tax relief measures.

BIA Levy
• The City of Edmonton is examining BIA levy relief measures.

• The Alberta government has said that charitable and non-profit groups will immediately receive an additional $60 million to support seniors and other vulnerable populations disproportionately affected by COVID-19.

Wage Subsidies
• The federal government will provide eligible small businesses a 10 per cent wage subsidy for the next 90 days, up to a maximum of $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer. Read more here.

Property Tax

When Alberta businesses are operating, they employ Albertans who can support themselves, their families and help keep the economy running. Effective immediately, the government will defer education property tax for businesses for six months.

• In the next six months, $458 million in cash will remain with employers to help them pay employees and continue operations.
• The government expects municipalities to set education property tax rates as they normally would, but defer collection. Deferred amounts will be repaid in future tax years.
• The government encourages commercial landlords to pass on these savings to their tenants through reduced or deferred payments. This will help employers continue to manage their debts, pay their employees and stay in business.
• Businesses capable of paying their taxes in full are strongly encouraged to do so. This will assist the province in being able to support Albertans through this pandemic.

WCB Premiums

Private sector employers can save money on their WCB premium payments at a time when they need it most. These actions ensure the sustainability of the workers’ compensation system and that injured workers continue to receive the benefits and supports they need to return to work.

• Private sector employers will have immediate financial relief by deferring WCB premiums until early 2021, effectively for one year.
• Employers who have already paid their WCB premium payment for 2020 are eligible for a rebate or credit.
• For small and medium businesses, the government will cover 50 per cent of the premium when it is due.
• Large employers will also receive a break by having their 2020 WCB premium payments deferred until 2021, at which time their premiums will be due.
• Paying 50 per cent of small and medium private sector WCB premiums for 2020 will cost government approximately $350 million.

Free online programs
Innovate Edmonton is happy to announce free access to Business Model 101 and Preflight for local startup founders and companies. All programs will be offered virtually, and program materials will be delivered to registered participants, as supplies allow. Read more here.