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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.

Federal small business loan program set to launch Thursday, but wage subsidy faces political impasse

A $25-billion federal loan program for small business is ready to launch but the government and opposition parties are at odds over legislative plans to pass separate wage subsidies for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Story

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‘The longer we go, the more we bleed money’: Entrepreneurs on their struggles amid the pandemic

Ottawa began announcing relief packages for small businesses affected by the novel coronavirus nearly three weeks ago. Few entrepreneurs were happy with the initial 10-per-cent wage subsidy for employees, which would not cover the losses of companies who’d shut their doors completely for fear of spreading the virus. Story

Self-employed workers, sole proprietors worry they are shut out of COVID-19 relief

Sole proprietors and other self-employed entrepreneurs are joining the growing list of Canadians who feel left behind by Ottawa’s COVID-19 relief programs, worried that taking on even the smallest sale or project will prevent them from accessing benefits. Story

Business groups welcome wage-subsidy changes revealed in draft bill

The Liberal government is expanding access to its proposed wage-subsidy program for employers, according to draft legislation obtained by The Globe and Mail, and is also putting the finishing touches on a plan to offer small businesses interest-free loans. Story

Emergency benefit to be expanded to cover more part-time workers, Trudeau says

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On opening day, at least 794,725 people applied for the Canada emergency response benefit to help those who have lost their job or who can’t work because of the COVID-19 pandemic, despite an effort to limit Monday applicants to those with January-March birthdays. Story

Dragon Arlene Dickinson raises $100-million to back food and health startups

When Dragons’ Den star Arlene Dickinson set out in 2015 to raise a $100-million venture capital fund focused on Canadian food, beverage, health and wellness startups, she met with skepticism. At a time when software was eating the world, why was she pitching businesses for the world to eat, some wondered? Some funders asked if there were enough domestic startups to back. Story

Canadian medical startups get major boost as Ottawa orders vital supplies in fight against COVID-19

Canadian medical device startups have struggled for years to sell to governments at home, making it hard to persuade foreign buyers to follow suit. The onset of the global COVID-19 crisis has changed that. Story

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