FALL RIVER: The small businesses of the country are what helps to drive the Canadian economy, said the Minister for Small Business and Export Promotion during a quick stop in Fall River.
Mary Ng joined Sackville-Preston-Chezzetcook MP Darrell Samson at the Tim Hortons in Fall River. While there, the two spoke with residents at the store. They also spoke with Steve Taylor, manager/franchisee of the business.
Ng said she has heard a lot from small businesses and the federal government is working to help those.
“I hear how our small businesses want to be competitive and keep growing,” said Ng, pointing to the reduction of the Small Business Tax from 11 per cent to nine per cent. “That’s almost $7,500 at the end of a year and those small businesses can invest it in themselves. A family restaurant for example could get an energy-efficient fridge. Convenience stores if they want to digitize their business so they can be more productive, they can get a point-of-sale system.
“The Small Business Tax is really helping businesses because it’s making them more competitive.”
Some small business owners feel more can be done. Ng said she’s heard the same.
“It’s one of the lowest rates in the G7 because we want our businesses to be competitive, but we’ve also heard they want some help if they want to make investments in their business,” said Ng.
She said they have made some changes to the tax rules this year that allows those in equipment processing or clean-tech, or an office buying software, a greater share of that purchase can be written of in the year you make that investment.
Ng said small businesses are now able to negotiate with credit card companies, and they’re going to charge them a little bit of a lower rate than in the past.
Ng was in Halifax in the morning where she announced some help for companies so they can export their product. The announcement was for $425,000 to the Halifax Chamber of Commerce in collaboration with N.S. Business Inc. to assist with a program called Trade Accelerated Program (TAP).
“TAP helps businesses make a plan so they can export and grow into the International marketplace,” said Ng. “Trade agreements give Canadian businesses of all sizes access to customers. These agreements gives them 1.5 billion customers.
“We want to help our businesses know how and where to grow and give them the supports they need so they can grow, and by growing they’re creating jobs right here in N.S.”
She spoke about getting more women in business.
“I am working with the mandate to double the amount of women entrepreneurs in Canada,” said Ng. “We’re investing in them by helping them grow their women-owned businesses.”
Samson said more than one million jobs have been created in the past three years, and the unemployment rate has dropped to lowest in Canada’s history during the same time.
“It’s government helping to create the conditions for job creation, but it’s the businesses themselves that are creating these jobs,” said Samson.
Ng said the Maritimes have some of the most incredible small businesses she’s seen anywhere in the country.
“You are also inclusive so you have some great women entrepreneurs as well as Indigenous entrepreneurs, and it’s fantastic,” said Ng. “What we can do to create the right environment, to make the right investments to help our businesses be competitive to grow and create great jobs is what we’re aiming to do.”