One in four NWT businesses temporarily shut down during the pandemic

The old Aurora Village office building (on the left). (Photo supplied by staff)
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One in four NWT businesses had to shut down temporarily during the pandemic, the second highest rate in the country, according to the NWT Bureau of Statistics.

Around four per cent of businesses shut down and have not reopened.

Nationally, around 18 per cent of businesses had to close down temporarily. The highest rate was in Newfoundland and Labrador with 27.6 per cent. Manitoba had the youngest rate at 10.5 per cent.

The biggest reason for shutdowns was travel restrictions, businesses said. The next biggest challenge for businesses in the territory was finding qualified staff.

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One in four NWT businesses saw profits decline by at least 30 per cent, which is below the national average of one in three. But small businesses with less than four employees are set to be hurt the most.

Half of the NWT businesses surveyed predicted they would see profits continue to decline in the next three months.

There was some good news for retail businesses, with most businesses reporting higher income in 2020 compared to 2019.

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