The effects of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to weaken businesses in Greater Montreal, particularly with regard to their level of debt, the probe from the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal indicated on Friday.
More than a quarter of the companies surveyed revealed that they might not survive the crisis beyond a period ranging from three months to a year, if ever the health restrictions continue.
And it is the financial impacts of the pandemic that worry the most, while more than 80% of the business leaders surveyed anticipate the maintenance or even the increase in their level of indebtedness over the next year, specified the Chamber. of Montreal trade.
In addition, nearly 21.7% of them foresee a decrease in their company’s investment, while a third plans to reduce the office space in 2021.
To cope with these repercussions, more than half (57.1%) of Montreal businesses plan to resort to government assistance measures, with the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (SSUC) being the most used by respondents.
In this health context, a large majority of the companies questioned (66.8%) also want Quebec to invest directly in health recovery, while nearly 47% of them hope to avoid an increase in the tax burden and 42.8% want to see existing aid programs redesigned or expanded.
Vaccination against COVID-19 also plays a key role in the revival of Montreal companies, while almost all respondents (91.7%) expect their employees to be vaccinated.
Aside from concerns about the pandemic, around 64% of business leaders stressed that they want to invest more in improving their productivity and nearly 60% of them want to strengthen the development of talent at the company. internal.