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Hi there,

Restaurants Canada continues to be at the table, working with all levels of government to ensure the concerns of the foodservice community are being addressed, while working with our partners to provide you with resources relevant to your operations, as the response to COVID-19 continues to evolve. 

Federal Announcements: CEBA and CECRA Program Updates

Yesterday Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced an expansion to the eligibility criteria for the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) to give more small businesses access to interest-free loans through this program.

The changes will make the program available to a greater number of business operators who are sole proprietors receiving income directly from their businesses, businesses that rely on contractors, and family-owned corporations that pay employees through dividends rather than payroll.

To qualify under the expanded eligibility criteria, applicants with payroll lower than $20,000 will need:

  • a business operating account at a participating financial institution;
  • a Canada Revenue Agency business number, and to have filed a 2018 or 2019 tax return; and
  • eligible non-deferrable expenses between $40,000 and $1.5 million. (Eligible non-deferrable expenses could include costs such as rent, property taxes, utilities, and insurance.)

More details, including the launch date for applications under the new criteria, will follow in the days to come.

Today the Prime Minister announced that applications for the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program will open May 25.

To help eligible businesses and their landlords prepare, sample versions of the application documents are now available on the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) website. We encourage you to review these documents in order to have the required information on-hand when the application portal opens.

Restaurants Canada continues to be at the table, working closely with the federal government to ensure the needs of foodservice are addressed as these programs continue to evolve.

Federal and Provincial Response Plans Handbook

For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 prevention and relief measures across Canada, download our "Navigating COVID-19: Federal and Provincial Response Plans" handbook. This handbook includes all government announcements and relief measures announced to date, both at the federal and provincial level, including an overview of each measure, how it works and any outstanding details still to be determined.

Last update: May 20, 2020 at 5:00pm ET.


(Information also available at

Reopening Tracker

Stay updated on how and when each province is planning to permit restaurants to reopen: This tracker provides real-time updates on government announcements and activities across the country related to lifting restrictions and reopening the economy. 
View Tracker

Navigating COVID-19: CECRA Program

As an operator, rent relief and assistance are top priorities as you navigate recovery, reopening, and the current COVID-19 lockdown measures. The Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program was recently introduced by the government, though working through eligibility and regulations can be difficult. To provide a little clarity, MENU spoke with CHI Real Estate Group to answer your most pressing questions about the CECRA program. Read more on

Further Resources and Information

We encourage you to continue visiting our dedicated COVID-19 web page where we will continue to share information and resources relevant to our industry, and don't forget to connect with us through our social channels:

Facebook | Instagram | Linkedin | Twitter 

Regionally on Twitter

If you have any questions or would like more information, please do not hesitate to get in touch.


Shanna Munro
Restaurants Canada
President & CEO | Présidente et cheffe de la direction