You’ve Got Questions? We’ve got Answers!

I want to start a business; what should I do first?

What does Ulnooweg do for Aboriginal business owners?

Do I have to repay a loan from Ulnooweg?

Does Ulnooweg provide money that doesn’t need to be repaid?

What should I do if I’m having trouble repaying my loan?

Why does my borrowing record matter?

Does Ulnooweg offer loans to Aboriginals who live off-reserve?

Does my business have to only employ Aboriginal employees?

What kind of business do I need to start to be eligible for a loan from Ulnooweg?

What business services do you provide?

Can I apply for more than one Ulnooweg loan at a time?

What is considered an Aboriginal business?

Who is considered an Aboriginal?

Do I have to register my business for GST/HST?

As an incorporated company, do I have to pay GST/HST?


I want to start a business; what should I do first?

All successful businesses start with a plan. Ask yourself: What kind of business do I want to start? Who will use my business? What kinds of competition will I have? Will I need employees? You can build a solid business plan with the help of a professional, and many government programs subsidize this kind of business plan development. Contact the team to learn more about where to start!


What does Ulnooweg do for Aboriginal business owners?
Ulnooweg’s primary role is to provide qualified Aboriginal entrepreneurs with business loans. Another big role is to help you find other sources of funding through government grants or non-repayable contributions. We also provide information on where to find the resources you need to make your business a success.

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Michael and Vicki House – Newfoundland Fasteners


Do I have to repay a loan from Ulnooweg?
Yes, Ulnooweg loans must be repaid. Ulnooweg’s ability to provide these loans to future generations of Aboriginals depends on repayment of loans.


Does Ulnooweg provide money that doesn’t need to be repaid?
Yes, Ulnooweg does provide non-repayable contributions.


What should I do if I’m having trouble repaying my loan?
Many business owners have trouble from time to time with cash-flow. If you are having difficulty making a payment on your Ulnooweg loan, contact the team. We will work with you to set up an alternate schedule to get you through your difficult time, without affecting your borrowing record.


Why does my borrowing record matter?
Nearly every business needs to borrow money from time to time. However, it is very difficult to obtain a loan from any lender or bank if you have a past history of not repaying loans. Ulnooweg works with each client to help them create a good loan repayment record.


Does Ulnooweg offer loans to Aboriginals who live off-reserve?
Yes! You do not have to live on reserve to receive a loan from Ulnooweg.


Does my business have to only employ Aboriginal employees?
No. Ulnooweg defines an Aboriginal business as one owned 51% by Aboriginal(s). Employees can be Aboriginal or non-Aboriginal.


What kind of business do I need to start to be eligible for a loan from Ulnooweg?
Ulnooweg supports all types of businesses. From resource-based industries like fishing and logging, to service-based industries like tour operators. The type of business is not important, what we look for is a solid plan to make your business succeed.


What business services do you provide?
We help clients find the resources they need to make their business grow. That may be a referral to something like a Canadian Business Service Centre, providing information on a special government grant, or giving input on a business plan.


Can I apply for more than one Ulnooweg loan at a time?
Yes! You can apply for a combination of loans, up to a maximum of $250,000.


What is considered an Aboriginal business?
Businesses where there is 51% or higher Aboriginal ownership and control.


Who is considered an Aboriginal?
To be considered a Canadian Aboriginal individual, the applicant must be of Canadian Aboriginal ancestry and be an acknowledged member of a national, provincial/territorial or local/regional Canadian First Nation, Metis, Inuit, Status or Non-Status Indian organization as determined by Ulnooweg.

The following are recognized:

National: Assembly of First Nations, Inuit Tapirit Kanatami of Canada and the Metis National Council.
Provincial/Territorial/Regional: Nunatsiavut Government (formerly Labrador Inuit Association), Nunatukavut (formerly Labrador Metis Association), Federation of Newfoundland Indians, New Brunswick Aboriginal Peoples Council, Native Council of Nova Scotia and the Native Council of Prince Edward Island.

Ulnooweg will only recognize organizations that are affiliated with a recognized National Aboriginal Organization.

Metis National Council affiliates:

  • Metis Nation of Ontario
  • Manitoba Metis Federation
  • Metis Nation Saskatchewan
  • The Metis Nation of Alberta
  • Metis Nation British Columbia

Inuit Tapirit Kanatami represents:

  • Nunatsiavut (Labrador)
  • Nunavik (northern Quebec)
  • Nanavut
  • Inuvialuit Settlement Region in Northwest Territories


Do I have to register my business for GST/HST?
Businesses owned by Aboriginals, bands, or band-empowered entities whose annual sales of property and services are more than $30,000, are required to register for the GST/HST. Like other businesses, once registered, they must collect the tax on their sales of property and services (unless the sales are made to Aboriginals, bands or band-empowered entities under conditions in which the GST is not payable), claim input tax credits for the GST/HST paid on purchases made in carrying out their business and remit the balance to Canada Revenue Agency GST/HST.


As an incorporated company, do I have to pay GST/HST?
Incorporated businesses owned by Aboriginals must pay the GST on their purchases of taxable goods and services. Incorporated band-empowered entities are not required to pay GST/HST on property acquired for use in band management activities and GST /HST will not apply when services are acquired for band management activities or for real property on reserve. Sole proprietorships and partnerships owned by Aboriginals receive the same treatment on purchases as individual Aboriginals. Click here to visit the Canada Revenue Agency GST/HST website.