The Globe and Mail reports in its Tuesday, Sept. 13, edition that Ottawa may be unable to recoup $5-billion or more of the $49-billion in emergency loans it extended to small businesses during the pandemic lockdowns, says a government projection. The Globe's Chris Hannay writes that the task of chasing down business owners to collect on the mountain of debt issued during the most acute phase of the pandemic was recently handed by the federal government to the Canada Revenue Agency. The Canada Emergency Business Account loan program sent more than $49-billion to nearly 900,000 businesses. Each loan is worth up to $60,000, and is interest-free and partly forgivable if the balance is repaid by Dec. 31, 2023. The Globe says it is estimated that $5-billion worth of loans could be particularly difficult to get back. The Globe reports that 100,000 borrowers might need to be chased down. A government briefing note said neither Export Development Canada nor the financial institutions that assisted with the loans would be able to handle collections. Canadian Bankers Association spokesman Mathieu Labreche says is it appropriate for the government to lead collection efforts because it guaranteed the loans, and is therefore the true lender.
© 2023 Canjex Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.