Indigenous Loan Guarantee Program

In Budget 2024, the Minister of Finance announced the creation of an Indigenous Loan Guarantee Program that will be delivered by a new subsidiary of CDEV.


Advance Indigenous participation in major projects, through the Indigenous Loan Guarantee Program, by providing more opportunities for Indigenous communities to benefit from the significant number of natural resource and energy projects proposed to take place in their territories.


Indigenous communities need to be able to share in the benefits of natural resource and energy projects in their territories and on their own terms. Due to the Indian Act and the legacy of colonialism, Indigenous communities have fewer options for securing capital or leveraging existing assets as collateral, leading to increased borrowing rates that create a barrier to equity investment in natural resource and energy projects.

The number of major natural resource and energy projects with potential for Indigenous equity participation is anticipated to grow significantly, with the First Nations Major Projects Coalition’s research expecting this potential to reach $525 billion in capital investment over the next ten years. If Canada is to make sure that Indigenous communities are able to fully benefit from the opportunities ahead, they need fair access to affordable capital that meets their unique needs.


CDEV is mandated to set up a new subsidiary to provide due diligence on the applications and administer the portfolio of loan guarantees along with support of Natural Resources Canada for intake and capacity building.

Building on the government’s 2023 Fall Economic Statement commitment to help facilitate Indigenous equity ownership in major projects, Budget 2024 proposes to launch the Indigenous Loan Guarantee Program with the following parameters:

  • Up to $5 billion in loan guarantees to unlock access to capital for Indigenous communities, creating economic opportunities and supporting their economic development priorities.
      • Applicant eligibility would recognize Indigenous governments, and their wholly owned and controlled entities.
      • The program would be sector-agnostic for natural resource and energy projects to prioritize economic reconciliation and self-determination.
      • The program would support projects across the country, and a range of project types, to ensure that Indigenous communities across the country benefit from the program.
  • Budget 2024 also proposes to provide $16.5 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to Natural Resources Canada, including $3.5 million over two years to support capacity funding for Indigenous communities and applicants and delivery of the Indigenous Loan Guarantee Program by CDEV. This investment will provide capacity building supports to assist eligible Indigenous communities in making applications for loans through the program

What is an Indigenous Loan Guarantee?

The Indigenous Loan Guarantee Program will provide access to affordable capital to Indigenous governments and communities. Loans would be provided by financial institutions or other lenders and guaranteed by the Government of Canada. This means that the borrower would benefit from the government’s AAA credit ratings, delivering a lower interest rate than is available to most borrowers.


The operating model that will govern the program is in the process of being developed. We are not accepting applications at this time, and further details will be released later this year.