Canadian Manufacturing

Ottawa to soon detail fiscal response to COVID-19 economic shock

Measures are rolling out in the coming days to buffer the economy from the sudden shock of the pandemic

March 17, 2020  The Canadian Press

OTTAWA — Finance Minister Bill Morneau is expected to soon announce the federal government’s plan to help workers affected by COVID-19.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said details of the spending package would arrive imminently, with measures rolling out in the coming days to buffer the economy from the sudden shock of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

He also suggested more measures may have to be taken in the long term to help restore consumer and business confidence.

A number of moves have been debated, such as temporarily boosting the value of the Canada Child Benefit and providing grants to workers who don’t qualify for employment insurance, such as gig economy workers.

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The federal government has also said it is closing its borders, effective March 18, to most foreign nationals except Americans and is barring anyone, including Canadian citizens, with symptoms of the novel coronavirus from boarding flights back home.

Calgary-based airline WestJet announced it was suspending all commercial international and transborder flights for a 30-day period, refocusing its efforts on repatriation flights for Canadians stuck abroad.