Federal government launches loan program for black-owned businesses


The federal government is opening the doors to a loan program that will provide financing to black-owned businesses.

The Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund will provide loans of up to $ 250,000 for majority black-owned businesses, or entrepreneurs for their startups or existing for-profit small businesses.

Social enterprises, partnerships and cooperative enterprises are also eligible for funding.

The government says applicants must have a company number, a business plan and financial statements, or project plans in the case of startups.

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<p>The Liberal government started the loan fund with $ 33.3 million, while the remainder of the $ 291.3 million program comes from a $ 130 million injection from the Business Development Bank of Canada, a company state, and $ 128 million distributed among the country’s largest banks and two credit unions.  . </p>
<p>The Federation of African-Canadian Economies will administer the loans, which will initially go through BDC and Alterna Savings and Vancity credit unions.</p>
<p>The latter two institutions will also participate in a pilot project in Ontario and British Columbia to provide microloans between $ 10,000 and $ 25,000 to help black businesses that need support to start or grow to fill. what the government calls a critical market gap.  .</p>
<p>The launch of the loan program comes months after the Liberals first introduced the plan last September, and days after the first anniversary of George Floyd’s death at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, which triggered protests around the world.</p>
<p>In its wake, the black parliamentary caucus, backed by several cabinet ministers, presented a series of recommendations the government must address, including funding for aid.</p>
<p>“This is a significant historic step in righting a historic wrong: the systemic barriers to accessing finance faced by people of African descent,” said Greg Fergus, chair of the black parliamentary caucus, in a statement. communicated.</p>
<p>“This loan fund partnership unleashes our extraordinary potential and creates economic prosperity for all Canadians.”</p>
<p>A recent survey of 342 black entrepreneurs, commissioned by the African-Canadian Senate Group, found that three-quarters of respondents said their race makes it harder to succeed in business, with systemic racism, access to capital and the lack of a business network, all cited as obstacles to growth.</p>
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