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This is the weekly Report on Small Business newsletter. If you’re reading this on the web, or if someone forwarded this e-mail to you, you can sign up for it and all Globe newsletters on our signup page.

Banks, credit unions will start offering government-backed loans to small businesses next week

Canada’s largest banks and credit unions plan to start offering government-backed loans to small businesses by next week, speeding up the rollout of the new lending program under pressure to deliver quick support to business owners. Story

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A plea from a small-business owner: Without immediate rent help, I will drown

I own four restaurants and a bar in downtown Toronto. Usually, April 1 would mean I’d be sending five rent cheques to happy landlords. But in the grips of the COVID-19 crisis, I’m not sending anything. Story

Insurer says it will pay dentists’ claims for pandemic coverage

Aviva Canada CEO Jason Storah says the insurance company will “stand by" its pandemic coverage for dentists who followed provincial orders to close down their practices because of the outbreak of COVID-19. Story

Canada’s food supply at risk as pandemic tightens borders to farm workers

The coronavirus pandemic is making it difficult for farmers to bring in temporary workers to plant crops on time, a problem that threatens Canada’s food supply. Story

Bars, nightclubs and cannabis growers don’t qualify for BDC COVID-19 loans

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Many Canadian companies are keen to tap into the federal government’s business credit availability program, created this month to provide emergency financing to businesses affected by COVID-19. But entrepreneurs in the cannabis sector and bar owners are among those discovering they may not be eligible for BCAP’s loans. Story

Commercial property landlords push back against rent relief requests from big firms

Commercial property landlords are balking at requests for rent relief from big companies, saying they need to focus on helping vulnerable smaller tenants such as independent restaurants, clothing stores and barbershops that may not survive the huge losses from the coronavirus pandemic. Story

Loans won’t save local small businesses

Tomorrow is April 1. The rent is due and it’s not going to be paid. According to a recent survey by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), 23 per cent of the organization’s members say they will not make their rent in April. At SaveSmallBusiness.ca, our survey numbers are even worse: 38 per cent said they won’t be able to pay. By May, that number jumps to nearly 70 per cent in our survey. Story

Trudeau says businesses, non-profits, charities all eligible for wage subsidy

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The federal government has vastly expanded the 75-per-cent wage subsidy for small businesses to include large companies as well as charities and non-profits to encourage them to keep workers on the payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic. Story

Fintechs struggle to lend to entrepreneurs, even as demand surges from virus

The coronavirus crisis is constraining digital small-business lending services just as they’re seeing a surge in demand from entrepreneurs left cash-strapped by the pandemic. Story

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