COVID-19 Update for April 3, 2020 – 12:00pm

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s daily briefing focused on medical supplies – 1) responding to US President Donald Trump’s order preventing American manufacturers from selling and delivering medical supplies to other countries, including Canada; and 2) an agreement with Amazon Canada to coordinate distribution of critical equipment.

Defense Production Act Order

Late yesterday, President Trump invoked the Defense Production Act to stop the shipping of personal protective equipment (PPE) to countries like Canada. When asked about the blockage, Trudeau said he has been working very closely with the United States and the level of integration between both economies goes both ways. He noted it would be a “mistake” to reduce the amount of trade across the border and hinted that the government is considering retaliatory measures. Earlier this morning, 3M — a medical company that produces ventilators in the U.S — issued a response that aligns with the Prime Minister’s position.

Amazon Canada Distribution Agreement

Trudeau announced that the federal government has signed an agreement with Amazon Canada to manage the distribution of personal protective equipment to the provinces and territories.

$100M Food Bank Investment

Citing growing shortages of food for vulnerable individuals, Trudeau announced a $100 million cash injection into organizations that buy and deliver food to those that need it most, including Indigenous communities. Recipients of this funding include Food Banks Canada, the Breakfast Club and the Salvation Army.

Canadian Armed Forces

Trudeau acknowledged that the province of Quebec has requested assistance from the Canadian Armed Forces to support northern communities in the province. The PM confirmed that he has agreed to provide this military assistance.

Financial Support for Canadians

The federal government is fast-tracking a previously announced GST/HST Credit to April instead of May. In addition, Trudeau said the government has been working with major banks on direct deposit for the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit and encouraged Canadians to visit their bank’s website to enrol for CERB direct deposit.

CBC Kids Video Conference

Trudeau will be hosting a live video conference for children with Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer. He asked Canadians to submit their questions through CBC Kids.

If you have any questions about this update please let us know.

The Enterprise Team

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