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Canada’s financial capital is in a pandemic stagnation, and it seems that there is no end to it.
In October, restaurants in Toronto were ordered to close their dining rooms, and the second wave of Covid-19 began to sweep the city. They have not opened up since then. The gym, nail salon and barber shop have almost closed.The mayor’s hair became so thick, it became Talking points on Twitter.
Spring is here, there is a ray of light hope.Allow restaurants to build outdoor terraces; hair salons were told them The plan may be launched on April 12. These plans were cancelled when the Ontario government implemented a four-week “emergency brake” measure. This emergency measure tightened the restrictions again and extended the restrictions to 14.7 million people in the province.
Ontario Governor Doug Ford, conservatively elected in 2018 with strong business support, kindly ask for your understanding. He said that this virus left him no choice. He said: “This decision makes me feel heavy.” “I know what it means for people who have been here for more than a year with this epidemic. It’s frustrating and very, very difficult.”
For some business owners, “difficulties” have turned into despair. They are annoyed by the unlimited restrictions and slow pace of the Canadian vaccine program.in a In a national company survey released in March, 10% of companies stated that they can operate for less than 12 months at current income and expenditure levels.
Only 13.3% of the Canadian population has received at least one Covid-19 injection. In the United States, this ratio is 30% Bloomberg Vaccine Tracker.
Read more: With the expansion of U.S. eligibility rules, the vaccine Tri stream becomes a torrent
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has set a goal of vaccinating every adult by September. At the same time, the border between Canada and the United States has been closed for more than a year and is still closed to most travelers, threatening another barren summer for airlines, hotels and tourism.
Dan Kelly, chief executive of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, a small business lobby group, said: “The mood in the corporate world has changed dramatically.” He said this has changed from accepting necessary measures to “Anger” at the government.
At lunchtime on the last working day, the sign outside Chotto Matte, Chotto Matte is located The Royal Bank of Canada headquarters announced that the patio is open for dining. Although the weather is sunny and warm in spring, no one is sitting there.
Wall Street companies may be planning Many employees were soon brought back to the office, but on the Bay Street in Toronto, the scene was quiet, and it is almost certain that this situation will remain the same for most of 2021.
In the past year, at the Bank of Montreal headquarters, less than 10% of employees entered the office regularly. Mona Malone, Bank of Montreal’s chief human resources officer, said in an interview that most people who work from home will stay there until vaccines are available.
In the long run, Malone hopes that the bank will adopt a hybrid model, where some employees will stay at home for some time. “People do miss contact with colleagues, but it will be different,” Malone said. “They will not return to the experience before Covid.”
Toronto banks quickly adapted to the pandemic and are now making money As a Canadian real estate market, profits were higher before Covid-19 Xiang. However, the small businesses surrounding them are starting to snap up.
Tom Antonarakis owns two seafood restaurants in downtown Toronto and hopes to sell these seafood restaurants at lower prices. Both are in a food court that relies on office workers for lunch.
Antonarakis said: “I’m trying to sell the prices of these two locations to nearly 30 cents to 1 U.S. dollar.” “We tried to open after the first lockdown, and then closed us again.” He also sold one of his two food trucks and operated the other in a shopping mall in the suburbs.
Both Ford and his senior officials acknowledged the economic pain, but they said these figures justified the expansion of restrictions.
In the past week, Ontario had about 160 new virus cases per million people every day. This is far less than the neighboring states of Michigan and New York, but still far below the second peak of the province.
But Ontario hospitals set a new high for Covid-19 intensive care patients this week. The problem is that a new variant of the virus, called B.1.1.7, makes people sick.
“It spreads much faster than before, and we can’t get the vaccine fast enough to break the third wave,” Doctor Adalsteinn Brown, one of the co-chairs of the Covid-19 Scientific Advisory Form in Ontario, said at a press conference on Thursday.
According to Nelson Wiseman, a professor of political science at the University of Toronto, politics is also an important factor.
Ford got High scores for voters who took decisive action in the early stages of a pandemic. Wiseman said he was worried that he would be overturned by the medical profession. Eileen de Villa, a senior doctor in Toronto, has always insisted on strict measures, including a ban on indoor dining.
Wiseman said in an interview: “This guy was scared to be stiff at first, and he has turned over.” “Our authorities have listened to the advice of medical staff. It’s not like Houston, not a place like Miami.”
The Ford and Trudeau governments have provided a series of grants and loans to help companies that have been harmed by Covid-19 restrictions. But for companies whose income depends on activities that are now prohibited, this is not enough.
“It’s a long road. It will take 25 weeks to stop work,” said Liz Clark, owner of Chair Decor, a supplier of linen for events. “The subsidies they have been providing have helped, but we are still wasting money every day. Our monthly burn is 10,000 Canadian dollars.”
—With the assistance of Erik Hertzberg and Danielle Bochove