June 24, 2021 – Ottawa, Ontario
As Canada works to finish the fight against COVID-19, the Government of Canada is committed to a strong, inclusive economic recovery that supports those who have been most disproportionately impacted, including women entrepreneurs.
Yesterday, the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade, joined Square Canada’s round table to discuss the Government of Canada’s ongoing support for women entrepreneurs and business owners as we start to emerge from the pandemic.
Minister Ng spoke about how investing in women and advancing gender equality are not only good social policy but also great economic policy. By advancing gender equality, Canada can add up to $150 billion to the Canadian economy, and if the world follows suit, we can add $12 trillion to the global economy.
Since 2015, the government has made historic investments to support women, including integrating gender-based analysis, legislating pay equity, enhancing the Canada child benefit and, most recently, making Canada-wide childcare a reality through a $30 billion investment in Budget 2021. The government is also addressing systemic barriers for women in business through programs like the now $6-billion Women Entrepreneurship Strategy (WES), which includes the Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub, the WES Ecosystem Fund and additional investments in Budget 2021 to strengthen the WES.
Another focus of the round-table discussion was ensuring that the momentum for women in the workforce is not lost to the disproportional effects of the pandemic. Minister Ng highlighted that this was a priority in the development of emergency support programs like the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy, which helped many women-owned businesses keep staff on the payroll and pay the bills. She also highlighted how important programs like the Canada Recovery Hiring Program and Budget 2021 investments will be for an inclusive recovery.