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Black entrepreneurs and business owners receive specialized support thanks to nearly $25M in Government of Canada funding

Greg Fergus, Member of Parliament for Hull‒Aylmer


MONTRÉALFeb. 28, 2022 /CNW Telbec/ – Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (CED)

Black business owners and entrepreneurs are major contributors to the Canadian economy. Yet they continue to face systemic racism and obstacles when they want to launch a business or expand. The COVID-19 pandemic has only aggravated the situation. The Government of Canada is working to eliminate these long-standing obstacles with its first Black Entrepreneurship Program (BEP)—an investment of over $400 million to foster long-term success among Black entrepreneurs and business owners.

Greg Fergus, Member of Parliament for Hull‒Aylmer and Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the President of the Treasury Board, accompanied by Emmanuel Dubourg, Member of Parliament for Bourassa, highlighted that a total of over $24,610,000 in financial assistance has been granted by the Government of Canada to ten organizations that will support Black entrepreneurs and communities in Quebec and Canada. Mr. Fergus participated in a virtual conference, on behalf of the Honorable Pascale St-Onge, Member of Parliament for Brome–Missisquoi, Minister of Sport and Minister responsible for CED, and the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development.

The recipients are Côte-des-Neiges Black Community Association, Audace au Féminin, the Centre d’encadrement pour jeunes femmes immigrantes (CEJFI), the Réseau des Entrepreneurs et Professionnels Africains, 0rijin Village, DESTA Black Youth Network, the Fondation Fabienne Colas, the Fonds Afro-Entrepreneurs, the Groupe 3737, and the Black Youth Socio‑Economic Development Summit.

These funds come from the National Ecosystem Fund, created to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem for Black entrepreneurs and business owners across Canada.

Additional information on the projects is provided in the related backgrounder.

Quotes

“I am really pleased to be able to announce these contributions to organizations that are a source of pride in our communities. Our economy must be more inclusive. I remain convinced that Black Canadians are one of the groups with the greatest entrepreneurial spirit. The National Ecosystem Fund makes it possible to free up this extraordinary potential and to foster economic prosperity among all Canadians.”

Greg Fergus, Member of Parliament for Hull‒Aylmer and Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the President of the Treasury Board

“This is an important day for these organizations bringing an unparalleled economic vibrancy to Black communities. I am proud to see the Government of Canada emphasizing its role in promoting an inclusive economy in Quebec.”

Emmanuel Dubourg, Member of Parliament for Bourassa

“These important investments are another example of our commitment to diversity and inclusion for Canada’s Black communities. Thanks to the National Ecosystem Fund, these organizations will be able to expand the scope of existing initiatives and create new ones. They will also offer invaluable support, services, and resources to Black entrepreneurs and businesses in Quebec in order to build more prosperous and inclusive communities.”

The Honourable Pascale St-Onge, Member of Parliament for Brome–Missisquoi, Minister of Sport and Minister responsible of CED

“Black business owners and entrepreneurs in Quebec make significant contributions to the Canadian economy and to the communities that surround them, but they continue to face systemic racism. These investments to support flagship organizations are an important step in helping these businesspeople.”

The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development

Quick facts

  • The National Ecosystem Fund under the Black Entrepreneurship Program aims to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem for Black entrepreneurs and business owners in Canada. It enables not-for-profit, Black-led organizations to develop new services or expand those they already offer, such as mentorship, networking, financial planning, and business training for Black entrepreneurs.
  • CED is a key federal partner in Quebec’s regional economic development. With its 12 regional business offices, CED accompanies businesses, supporting organizations and all regions across Quebec into tomorrow’s economy.

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SOURCE Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions

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