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New funding announced for federal programs that support Indigenous entrepreneurs


The federal government is spending $2.5 million to expand an entrepreneurship program for Indigenous women and create a similar program for Indigenous youth.

Small Business Minister Rechie Valdez made the announcement in Cape Breton, saying that when Canada builds a more inclusive economy, it’s building a stronger economy.

The new money for the women’s program will help up to 2,400 participants start and grow their businesses.

As for the youth program, the funding will be aimed at expanding leadership opportunities and helping develop resources for young business owners.

Valdez says Canada is home to more than 50,000 Indigenous-owned businesses that contribute about $50 billion to the Canadian economy.

Cape Breton MP Jaime Battiste issued a statement saying the programs will lead to economic empowerment that will have a positive ripple effect across Canada.

“Bringing equity-seeking groups into the fold and giving them a seat at the table are the hallmarks of a just society and a competitive economy,” Battiste said.

—By The Canadian Press