Businesses Ask For Extension To Forgivable Portion Of CEBA

Small businesses that took out a Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) loan have just over 60 days to repay the loan while securing the forgivable portion of up to $20,000, and many are worried they won’t be able to meet the January 18, 2024, deadline.

If government doesn’t extend the repayment deadline, there will be significant consequences to the whole Canadian economy, warns the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

A majority (87%) of small businesses that took on a CEBA loan said they need a further extension to the end of 2024.

“Extending the forgivable deadline until the end of 2024 would be a key step in alleviating some of the cost pressures facing small businesses,” said Corinne Pohlmann, Executive Vice-President of Advocacy at CFIB.

“If businesses fail—and according to our estimates, up to 250,000 small firms may close doors if they lose out on the forgivable portion—there will be a ripple effect on the whole Canadian economy.”

Recent Statistics Canada data showed that the COVID-19 pandemic caused more business closures in one year than the 2008/2009 financial crisis. The number of new business openings in July also reached its lowest level on record, according to Statistics Canada’s latest monthly estimates.

“With small businesses contributing over half of Canada’s GDP, we worry this situation will become worse if the CEBA forgivable deadline is not extended. We’re already seeing a wave of business closures and fewer people wanting to become entrepreneurs,” Pohlmann added.

CFIB has been pushing hard on behalf of small businesses to extend the CEBA forgivable deadline from January 18, 2024, to Dec. 31, 2024.

CFIB garnered over 50,000 signed petitions from small business owners across the country calling on Ottawa for more time. All 13 Canadian premiers also recently sent a letter to Ottawa, joining the growing calls for an extension.

“Finding enough funds to repay the loan in two months is a herculean task for many small business owners right now. Time is slipping away and they’re trying to figure out how they will be able to repay the loan while they’re reeling from inflationary cost pressures and low levels of sales,” said Jasmin Guenette, Vice-President of National Affairs at CFIB.

“There’s still a chance to show Ottawa is listening to the urgent concerns of Canada’s small businesses by extending the forgivable deadline to the end of 2024.”

Business owners can visit CFIB’s website for more information on CEBA and their financing options.

Image by FlyFin Inc from Pixabay


  1. Yes fully agreed. Banks are not replying, days are flying, deadline approaches. We need complete relief.
    Sales have declined, interests have skyrocketed, no cash revenues cost of imports, taxes, shipping, decline in sales. Cannot manage it.
    Need relief. Ottawa wake up pl.

  2. Doing a deadline when we are still struggling to stay afloat
    The cost of goods the cost of shipping cost of wages its really hard for
    small businesses. During covid we were closed but big box stores stayed open and made millions. But we small businesses don’t get the cut in taxes deals for buying bulk ect …so it’s not fare I believe the government should do debit relief for small businesses to get us back to where we were before covid hit us.

  3. Hi,

    We have started a petition to advocate for the forgiveness.

    Please support.


    Moe Tabesh, CPA, CGA, B. Comm

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