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Support for PEI businesses, workers and families

The province of Prince Edward Island has announced a series of tax changes and government measures to build on the federal government’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. On March 16, PEI’s government allocated $25 million to the Emergency Contingency Fund and then increased it by an additional $15 million on April 3.

Emergency Income Relief for the Self-Employed

  • A temporary fund program to support self-employed individuals who have been significantly affected by COVID-19.
  • Maximum of $500/week for the period March 16, 2020 - April 20, 2020 (period will be reviewed as required).


To be eligible, self-employed individuals must:

  • Have declared business income on their most recent tax return and it must be their primary source of income;
  • Demonstrate direct financial losses resulting from the COVID-19 isolation measures at the time of application; and
  • Not be receiving any other income support (ie: Business Interruption Insurance) or be eligible for EI

For details, please visit:

Emergency Relief – Worker Assistance Program

  • A temporary program that provides financial support to employers to assist their employed workers who have been impacted by reduced hours as a result of COVID-19.
  • Eligible employers will receive a maximum of $250 per week for each employed worker that experienced a reduction of at least eight hours per week during the two-week period March 16, 2020 - April 20, 2020.
    • 50% of this amount will be advanced upon approval of the application and the final advance sent upon completion of a payment claim form and receipt of payroll verification.
  • Eligible employers include registered private sector businesses or non-profit organizations in PEI where employed workers have experienced a reduction of at least eight hours per week during the two-week period March 16, 2020 - March 29, 2020.
  • Workers that have been laid off are not eligible.

How to apply

  • Complete the Emergency Relief - Worker Assistance Program online
  • Upload Payee Registration Form during the application process.
    • Do not email the Payee Registration Form to Payment Processing.
  • Provide a void cheque or correspondence from a financial institution for direct deposit

The following information is required in order to complete the online application form:

  • Legal business name
  • Provincial corporate registry number or business number/HST number
  • Workers compensation firm number
  • Date business was established
  • Legal signing officers

For more information, contact SkillsPEI at 902-368-6290 or 902-438-4151.

Emergency Working Capital Financing

  • A financing program developed to provide emergency working capital to assist small business during economic disruption caused by COVID-19.
  • Eligible applicants can receive a working capital loan of up to $100,000 per company—with a fixed interest rate of 4% per annum to assist with fixed operating costs—including payroll, rent, utilities, etc.
  • Principal and interest payments deferred for 12 months with an outstanding balance are to be repaid over a 5-year period (total term of six years).
  • Loans are secured by a:
  • Promissory note for the full amount of the loan
  • Personal guarantee of business owner(s)
  • General Security Agreement
  • Eligible businesses include:
  • Existing small businesses (startups are not eligible) located and operating in PEI, and have been generating revenue in PEI 
  • Registered to conduct business within the province of PEI
  • A satisfactory credit rating and must not have any defaulted outstanding debt obligation on file in the province’s Central Default Registry

How to apply

  • Small businesses in PEI will be required to submit an application and supporting documentation to Finance PEI, including:
  • Financial statements for the most recent year end
  • Interim financial statements for the current year to date
  • Detailed listing of what the loan proceeds will be used for and when funding will be needed
  • Statement of Personal Financial Affairs (personal net worth statement) from all applicable shareholders
  • Eligible Working Capital Expense Worksheet
  • Successful applicants will be issued a Letter of Offer outlining the complete terms and conditions of the loan. Ongoing financial reporting will be required.

Direct all inquiries and submit applications with supporting documents by email only to

Employee Gift Card Program

  • The Government of PEI has partnered with Sobeys on a temporary program offering a Sobeys gift value to any employee, living and working in PEI, who has received a lay-off notice as a direct result of the impacts associated with COVID-19.
  • Maximum of $100 per employee provided in the form of a letter with a unique gift card number.
  • To be eligible:
  • Employer must have issued lay-off notice(s) to one or more employees as a result of COVID-19, between the dates of March 13, 2020 - April 15, 2020.
  • Affected employees have a salary of $25/hour or less.

How to apply

  • The online application should be completed by the employer.
  • Once approved, an email will be sent to the employer with individual letters for employees containing gift card numbers. The gift cards can be redeemed at any Sobeys, Foodland, Co-op or Lawton’s store in PEI. The employee must present this letter and their photo ID (or two valid pieces of personal identification) in order to redeem.

For more information, contact or call 1-866-213-7521.

Commercial Lease Rent Deferral Program

  • To support small and medium-sized businesses, landlords are encouraged to defer rent payments from their commercial tenants for three months, spreading the deferred rent amount over the rest of the lease term.
  • Eligible applicants can apply to receive up to a maximum of $50,000 per landlord and $15,000 per tenant if they are unable to recover the deferred rent.
  • To be eligible for the COVID-19 Small Business Rental Deferral Guarantee Program, landlords must register with Finance PEI by April 15, 2020 by emailing with the following information:
  • Landlord’s legal name
  • For each deferral agreement, include:
    • Business’s legal name
    • Business’s address
    • Total dollar amount of rent being deferred for the period of April 1 to June 30, 2020.
  • The Rent Deferral Agreement must be in place by April 15, 2020.
  • There are qualification standards that the province has put in place for businesses and landlords that are eligible for this program. Further details can be found in the guidelines document.

How to apply

Applicants must submit the above information to in order to apply.

COVID-19 Business Adaption Advice Program

  • The COVID-19 Business Adaptation Program provides a non-repayable contribution towards the cost for PEI businesses and entrepreneurs to hire a professional to provide advice and support to adapt to, or recover from, the impacts of COVID-19.
  • This assistance may contribute up to 100% of the cost—to a maximum of $2500—to engage a professional business consultant.
  • PEI businesses who have been impacted by the effects of COVID-19 are eligible to apply.
  • This assistance will contribute to the costs associated with obtaining:
  • Business, human resources and financial planning and advice
  • Advice on transitioning to digital or IT solutions
  • Advice on exporting, marketing and logistics
  • Other professional services which may be of assistance in adapting or recovering from the impacts of COVID-19 determined in consultation with Innovation PEI
  • Applications must clearly identify the challenge the business is looking for a solution to, and must clearly be an incremental engagement of professional services.
  • Applicants are encouraged to discuss with an Innovation PEI representative to determine if the activity could be eligible for funding.

How to apply

Applicants must submit the above information using the online application.

COVID-19 Income Support Fund

  • The COVID-19 Income Support Fund provides financial support to residents of PEI to bridge the gap between the loss of their job/lay-off, loss of primary source of income, expired EI benefits, or loss of all revenues through self-employment as a result of COVID-19.
  • The assistance is a one-time lump sum payment of $750 (taxable).
  • Eligible individuals include:
    • Individuals who have lost their job/laid off on or after March 13, 2020 or whose Employment Insurance (EI) benefits have expired and have no job to return to due to the public health state of emergency in PEI.
    • Self-employed individual who has lost all revenues through self-employment on or after March 13, 2020 due to the public state of emergency in PEI and has NOT already accessed the Emergency Income Relief for the Self Employed (discussed above) program.
    • Have applied (or plan to apply) for support through the federal government (either Employment Insurance Benefits or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit).
    • Individuals must also be (1) a resident of PEI for tax purposes on December 31, 2019, (2) 18 years of age or older, (3) have lost their primary source of income and (4) earned a minimum of $5,000 gross earnings in the last 12 months or calendar year.

How to apply

Applications can be submitted until April 30, 2020 using the online application.

COVID-19 Special Situation Fund for business and organizations

  • The COVID-19 Special Situation Fund for businesses and organizations is a temporary program to support organizations that have been significantly affected by COVID-19, have an urgent need, and are not eligible for other federal or provincial funding support.
  • Eligible organizations include:
    • Organizations that aren’t eligible for other federal and provincial government programs, including COVID-19 emergency funding programs.
    • Businesses must have declared business income on their most recent tax return.
    • Community groups and non-government organizations must have been operating in PEI as of December 31, 2019.

How to apply

Additional information on eligibility and collection of information can be found here.

Applications can be submitted until April 15, 2020 using the online application.


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