CME encouraged Canadian borders to remain open to trade, calls for more relief for businesses and workers

OTTAWA (March 16, 2020) – Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) welcomes the extraordinary efforts of the federal government to slowdown the spread of COVID-19 announced today by the Prime Minister and we eagerly await details on further steps to stimulate the economy.

“Manufacturers applaud the government for recognizing the importance of our borders remaining open to trade. This is essential for continued access to critical supply chain components including for food processing and medical device production.”  said Dennis Darby, President & CEO of CME.   “The manufacturing sector, which represent one-third of the economy, is being disproportionally hit by this crisis and the necessary containment measures put in place by governments.  Because workers cannot work from home, the school closures are putting significant pressure on the labour force and there are concerns that the travel ban for non-residents will impact manufacturers’ access to temporary foreign workers.”

“It is critical that the government develops a fiscal stimulus package in short order so businesses can keep afloat and Canadians can remain employed,” stated Darby.

CME has developed a series of public policy recommendations designed to help the manufacturing sector and the broader economy weather this crisis. “We encourage the government to adopt our recommendations in an effort to blunt those economic impacts and enable the Canadian economy to keep functioning and rebound once the crisis has passed,” added Darby. “This is a unique economic crisis that required decisive and exceptional solutions.”

CME’s plan for all of government levels focuses on:

  • Temporary cuts to payroll tax and other government fees
  • Helping manufacturers stay afloat through grants
  • Universal access to support programs with minimal red-tape



Since 1871, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters has been helping manufacturers grow at home and, compete around the world. Our focus is to ensure manufacturers are recognized as engines for growth in the economy, with Canada acknowledged as both a global leader and innovator in advanced manufacturing and a global leader in exporting. CME is a member-driven association that directly represents more than 2,500 leading companies who account for an estimated 82 per cent of manufacturing output and 90 per cent of Canada’s exports.


Stefi Proulx
Director of Communications
Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters
C:  613-292-6070 | | @CME_MEC