CBDC to Launch Immigrant Loan Pilot Program

Coastal Business, a Community Business Development Corporation (CBDC) is implementing an Immigrant Loan pilot program designed to provide access to capital and advisory assistance for those who do not yet have permanent residence status and wish to start a business.


The Immigrant Loan Program (ILP) will begin with $250,000 in available funding. Under the project, Coastal Business will provide loans of up to $20,000 to those planning to start a business. Traditional lenders such as banks and government programs do not tend to lend to temporary residents, presenting challenges to those in the process of immigrating. 


“Immigration is critical to growing the economy of Cape Breton,” says Patricia MacNeil, Executive Director of Coastal Business. “Supporting newcomers to start and build businesses is one way to encourage immigrants to settle here, which will lead to increased population and job creation.” 


More than 3,500 international students from more than 50 countries study at Cape Breton University (CBU). In a collective effort to encourage more current international students and recent graduates to remain in Cape Breton, CBU and Coastal Business will sign a memorandum of understanding with the purpose of facilitating creativity, growth and innovation for Cape Breton Island. Through the agreement, information on the ILP will be made readily available to temporary residents looking to settle down in Cape Breton communities. 


“At Cape Breton University, we are proud of the work we do to bring international students to Cape Breton and welcome them into our communities,” says David Dingwall, Cape Breton University President. “This pilot project will allow more of our students, graduates and their family members to remain here in Cape Breton, starting and growing businesses that will contribute to the sustainability of the Island.”


ILP loans will be available to applicants 19 and older who do not yet have permanent residence status. Proceeds can be used to finance business costs including fixed assets, start-up costs and working capital. Recipients will also be given advisory services, training seminars and consulting services through the program. 


To learn more or to apply for a loan, visit: https://www.cbdc.ca/en/programs/immigrant-loan-program-pilot-project