Trudeau to provide update on Canada’s response to COVID-19 pandemic

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to offer an update on Canada’s response to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

According to his official itinerary, Trudeau will address Canadians at 11 a.m. ET from Rideau Cottage where he is in self-isolation.

Global News will stream his speech here.

READ MORE: Live updates — Coronavirus in Canada

On Friday Trudeau announced the federal wage subsidy for small and medium-sized businesses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak would be jumping up to 75 per cent.

Trudeau had previously announced a 10 per cent wage subsidy, but conceded that it wasn’t enough.

“It’s becoming clear that we need to do more — much more — so we’re bringing that percentage up to 75 per cent for qualifying businesses,” Trudeau told reporters. “This means people will continue to be paid even though their employers have to slow down or stop their businesses.”

1:59New federal help for small and medium-sized businesses

New federal help for small and medium-sized businesses

Meanwhile on Friday, Canada’s deputy chief public health officer said Canada’s fight with COVID-19 is far from over, and that it could include a second wave.

Dr. Howard Njoo said Canada is in it “for the long haul.”

READ MORE: Trudeau promises 75% wage subsidy for businesses hit by coronavirus pandemic

“It’s definitely months. Many months,” Njoo estimated Friday as the number of novel coronavirus cases in Canada surged.

According to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), as of 6 p.m. ET on Friday, the total number of COVID-19 cases in Canada had topped 4,600.

The PHAC said more than 170,600 Canadians have been tested for the virus.

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) also offered an update on Friday, saying four flights repatriating citizens from Ecuador, Peru, Guatemala and El Salvador were set to arrive in Canada.

Additional flights repatriating Canadians from Spain and Poland were also set to arrive on Friday.

“We are working to help as many Canadians as possible return home, but some may remain outside of the country for an indeterminate amount of time,” the release reads.

According to GAC, as of Friday, more than 411,400 Canadians had registered abroad.

0:54Coronavirus outbreak: Trudeau says U.S. putting troops near Canadian border would be a ‘mistake’

Coronavirus outbreak: Trudeau says U.S. putting troops near Canadian border would be a ‘mistake’

But, because registration is voluntary, GAC said it is “not a complete picture of Canadians outside the country.”

GAC said as of Friday, 232 emergency loan applications had been approved, with an additional 800 applications being processed.

–With files from Global News’ Amanda Connolly and The Canadian Press

View link »

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.