Archived — 2011: Year of the Entrepreneur

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The Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism) and the Honourable Ted Menzies, Minister of State (Finance) take a tour of the Ryerson Digital Media Zone

The Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism), left, and the Honourable Ted Menzies, Minister of State (Finance) take a tour of the Ryerson Digital Media Zone marking the Year of the Entrepreneur at Ryerson University's Digital Media Zone, in Toronto .

Photo: J.P. Moczulski / The Canadian Press Images

Entrepreneurs create about 130,000 new companies every year in Canada. The government supports small businesses through programs and services to stimulate economic growth, create more jobs for Canadians and help businesses compete and succeed in the global marketplace. The government's designation of 2011 as the Year of the Entrepreneur marks a new phase in Canada's Economic Action Plan and builds on the steps the government has already taken to help entrepreneurs.

Initiatives and Programs

  • The government has delivered more than $200 billion in tax relief to Canadians since 2006, enabling entrepreneurs to put more of their revenues back into their businesses. The amount of business income eligible for the small business tax rate of 11 percent was raised to $500,000 from $300,000.
  • It has cut almost 80,000 red tape requirements for small and medium-sized businesses since 2009. Most recently, Prime Minister Stephen Harper launched the Red Tape Reduction Commission on , to find further ways to reduce the burden of federal regulatory requirements on Canadian enterprises. Budget 2010: Leading the Way on Jobs and Growth created a private sector committee, the Advisory Committee for Small Business and Entrepreneurship, to provide the government with information, advice and recommendations on the most important concerns facing Canada's small businesses.
  • The first phase of Canada's Economic Action Plan delivered $15 million annually to support the Canada Business Network. Canada Business Network provides essential information to help business owners start up and grow their businesses, all of which is available through a national website, a national toll-free telephone line and 13 regional service centres. The government also established BizPaL, another online service that simplifies the business permit and licence process for entrepreneurs, governments, and third-party business service providers.
  • The Canada Small Business Financing Program supports about $1 billion in loans to approximately 10,000 small businesses each year to help them get started or make improvements and expand. The government raised the maximum loan amount under this program to $350,000 from $250,000 and up to $500,000 for real property, as part of Canada's Economic Action Plan.
  • The government supports the commercialization of research and development for small and medium-sized businesses through programs such as the Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Innovation Commercialization Program, or "Kickstart," that was launched in 2010 with $40 million over two years to improve their productivity and competitiveness.
  • Through Canada's Economic Action Plan, the government provided the Canadian Youth Business Foundation (CYBF) with $10 million in funding over two years to give young entrepreneurs access to business loans and mentoring services to help them start up and operate new businesses. In addition, each year, the Small Business Internship Program helps about 400 students across Canada gain valuable experience and helps entrepreneurs adopt an active e-business strategy that adds to their competitiveness.
  • The Debit and Credit Code of Conduct was passed into law last year. This Code encourages choice and competition in the credit and debit market for the benefit of consumers and merchants. It promotes fair business practices and ensures merchants and consumers clearly understand the costs and benefits of credit and debit cards. It also gives merchants increased pricing flexibility to encourage consumers to choose the lowest-cost payment option. And it allows merchants to freely choose which payment options they will accept.

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