Tourism industry claims one-third of BC economic stimulus fund

British Columbia’s hospitality and tourism sector, particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, is demanding more than a third of the $ 1.5 billion provincial stimulus fund being used to help industries get their businesses back on track. activities.

Coalition representing 19,000 businesses calls on the provincial government for $ 680 million, which it says will save up to 100,000 jobs and provide immediate assistance to businesses suffering from restrictions on travel and gatherings .

For decades, tourism has been a strong and consistent economic engine for the province and an important source of employment in all communities in British Columbia , says the president of the Tourism Association of the province, Vivek Sharma, in a press release.

What we are asking for is a return on the investments that the tourism and hospitality sector has made in the provincial and national economy over these decades.

Vivek Sharma, President of the British Columbia Tourism Association
Most tourism businesses are small and medium-sized local businesses that directly contribute to the community’s economy, says the provincial government in a report on the industry which generated no less than $ 20.5 billion in 2018.

Three-part plan

The British Columbia Tourism Association believes that the existing comprehensive economic recovery plan is not enough to revive a sector in which 300,000 jobs were affected at the height of the pandemic.

Rather, it offers a three-part plan:

  • a grant of $ 475 million to help maintain the creditworthiness of companies that have the prospect of returning to profitability over the medium term, which may include low rate or no interest loans;
  • a $ 190 million grant intended to support businesses in developing health and safety measures that meet public health requirements;
  • a $ 15 million grant to help create supply chains in industry sub-sectors (accommodation, attractions, transportation, foodservice and retail).

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