The Northwest Territories government has announced new funding for small and medium businesses impacted by cancellations and closures during the Omicron wave of Covid-19.
In a news release on Thursday, the Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment announced that businesses in the territory can now access up to $5,000 to offset losses from cancelled bookings and closures since January 7, 2022. The new program will be in effect until March 31, or until the allocated funding is spent. The NWT government did not disclose the total amount of funding available.
“Small and medium businesses are critically important to the diversity of an economy. In the Northwest Territories, we have a wide range of businesses with both niche and broad offerings, and we are lucky to have such a spectrum of products and services. These businesses have had to be resilient and adaptive throughout these past two years, to keep both their employees and customers safe while still being able to stay in business,” Caroline Wawzonek, the minister of industry, tourism and investment said in a statement. “The GNWT will continue to offer important supports and flexible programs and policies for small and medium businesses to ensure they are able to continue to operate in a territory that values and celebrates them.”
The department added that operational support for businesses, which was announced in late September, has been expanded.
Businesses were initially able to apply for up to $5,000 to help cover costs like rent and utilities while facing the impacts of Covid-19 gathering limits. That cap increased to $12,500 in October. As of Thursday, funding for the initiative increased to $25,000.
The funding is available through the territorial government’s Support for Entrepreneurs and Economic Development program, more commonly known as the Seed program.
The NWT government is scheduled to announce changes to current public health orders on Friday at 4pm.