Government of Canada invests in small- and medium-sized businesses across Southern Ontario



    ANCASTER, ON, Sept. 4 /CNW/ - The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of
State (Science and Technology and Federal Economic Development Agency for
Southern Ontario), announced today that the Government of Canada is supporting
job creation for R&D-intensive small- and medium-sized businesses across
Southern Ontario through strategic investments.
    "The Government of Canada is investing in innovative companies to create
jobs and stimulate the economy in communities across Southern Ontario," said
Minister Goodyear. "We are supporting science and technology at local
businesses so that people throughout the region will benefit from increased
opportunities as we strengthen the long-term capacity for research and
innovation of these firms."
    The Government of Canada is investing $45 million this year - $27.5
million through FedDev Ontario and $17.5 million through the Community
Adjustment Fund - as part of its Economic Action Plan to support job creation
in Southern Ontario. The $45 million funding allotment is being delivered by
the National Research Council Industrial Research Assistance Program
(NRC-IRAP) and will target businesses in R&D-intensive sectors of the economy.
    "Investing in small- and medium-sized companies develops research and
innovation capacity at the local level that helps to strengthen the Canadian
economy by creating knowledge and commercializing technology," said NRC
President Dr. Pierre Coulombe. "That's why NRC-IRAP is helping innovative
Canadian businesses grow stronger, faster and bigger."
    Minister Goodyear made the announcement at Activation Laboratories Ltd.,
a firm recognized as a Canadian Innovation Leader for developing innovative
analytical solutions for the geochemical, geometallurgical, biotech, material
testing, forensic, petroleum, mining, pharmaceutical, and agricultural
industries, and in linking scientific research to commercialization, jobs, and
economic growth. The Minister also announced that Activation Laboratories
Limited would be receiving up to $749,760 through NRC-IRAP for the development
of a Mineral Liberation Analyzer. This project will develop facilities and
technologies providing quantitative and statistically robust mineralogical
data to the mining industry by using automated e-beam technology.
    A Canadian Innovation Leader is a small- or medium-sized enterprise (SME)
that demonstrates specific advances in research and development within its
industrial sector. NRC created the Canadian Innovation Leader Certificate
Program to recognize Canadian firms that have successfully developed and
applied innovative technologies.

    About NRC-IRAP

    The NRC Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) provides a
range of both technical and business-oriented advisory services along with
necessary financial support to qualified innovative Canadian small- and
medium-sized enterprises. The Government of Canada's Economic Action Plan has
provided new resources of $200 million over the next two years to bolster
NRC-IRAP support for innovative Canadian firms.
    For more information, please visit NRC-IRAP's Web site 
(http://www.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/eng/ibp/irap.html).

    About FedDev Ontario

    On August 13, 2009 Prime Minister Stephen Harper formally launched the
Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
This new agency is charged with delivering federal government economic
development programs tailored to the specific priorities of workers,
businesses and communities in Southern Ontario.
    To learn more, please visit Canada's Economic Action Plan online
(http://www.actionplan.gc.ca/eng/media.asp?id=1593).

    
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                                 Backgrounder

                        CANADA'S ECONOMIC ACTION PLAN
                        -----------------------------

             NEW REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT AGENCY FOR SOUTHERN ONTARIO

     ABOUT THE FEDERAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AGENCY FOR SOUTHERN ONTARIO
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

                               (FEDDEV ONTARIO)
                               ----------------
    

    In Canada's Economic Action Plan, the Harper Government committed to
providing short-term stimulus to communities hard hit by the recession while
delivering long-term funding designed to promote economic growth, job creation
and innovation. Budget 2009 provided $1 billion over five years for a new
economic development agency for Southern Ontario.
    On August 13, 2009 Prime Minister Stephen Harper formally launched the
Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
This new agency is charged with delivering federal government economic
development programs tailored to the specific priorities of workers,
businesses and communities in Southern Ontario.
    The Prime Minister announced his intent to have Minister of State
(Science and Technology) Gary Goodyear assume responsibility for the Agency
and that B.A. (Bruce) Archibald will serve as the agency's first President.
Further announcements on the staffing and location of district offices are to
be expected throughout the fall.
    In its first year of operation, FedDev Ontario will focus on putting
economic development programs into action. The Agency will assess immediate
opportunities and needs, and then bridge into broader program initiatives once
the agency is fully operational.
    FedDev Ontario and Industry Canada will work with community stakeholders
to identify and support projects that address current economic challenges.
    The Agency will initially use existing programs and partnerships to
expedite the provision of funds. This will start money flowing immediately
into Southern Ontario communities and businesses. Funding in the first year
will be approximately $206 million, including operating costs, focused on
three priority areas: Economic development, diversification and community
development.
    The Southern Ontario Development Program has been established to promote
economic development, economic diversification and job creation. A core
program, it will deliver close to $100 million in funding over 2009-10.
    FedDev Ontario will help Southern Ontario communities diversify their
local economies, including into a wider range of value-added and technology
driven products and services. It will provide the tools for its partners in
the region to build on their strengths, positioning Southern Ontario to
succeed in the knowledge-based economy.

    
    PROGRAMS TO BE ADMINISTERED BY FEDDEV ONTARIO
    ---------------------------------------------
    

    Southern Ontario programs to be administered by, or in conjunction with,
FedDev Ontario include:

    Community Adjustment Fund in Ontario

    The Community Adjustment Fund (CAF) is a short-term economic stimulus for
communities impacted by the global recession. Part of Canada's Economic Action
Plan, the Fund supports projects that create jobs and maintain employment in
and around communities that have been most severely affected by the economic
downturn.
    Funding is available for eligible projects that can be completed before
March 31, 2010. Applications for 2010-2011 CAF project funds will be accepted
by FedDev Ontario later this year.

    National Research Council - Industrial Research Assistance Program

    The National Research Council's Industrial Research Assistance Program
(NRC-IRAP) stimulates wealth creation for Canada through technological
innovation. It provides financial and technological assistance to small and
medium-sized enterprises, targeting those engaged in research, development,
adaptation, adoption, or commercialization of innovative products, services or
processes.
    IRAP already has $67.3 million in funds available, and will receive an
additional $27.5 million to further build the innovative capacities of
Southern Ontario's small and medium-sized enterprises.

    Community Futures Program

    Ontario's Community Futures Program will receive an additional $30M from
the Community Adjustment Fund in 2009-2010. The Community Futures Program
assists rural and northern communities to strengthen and diversify their
economies.
    The Program is implemented through Community Futures Development
Corporations (CFDCs), located in communities across the province, including 37
in rural Southern Ontario. Small and medium-sized enterprises as well as
non-profit organizations can receive repayable financing and important support
services.

    Business Development Bank of Canada

    The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) will invest a total of $50
million in Southern Ontario through venture capital firms and the BDC's own
programs. These funds will help develop a high-performing, sustainable venture
capital industry in the region.





For further information:

For further information: (media only), contact: Gary Toft, Director of
Communications, Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State
(Science and Technology and FedDev Ontario), Tel.: (613) 943-7599; Media
Relations, National Research Council Canada, Tel: (613) 991-1431,
media@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca


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