Innovation means growth and new clean energy in La Tuque

Government of Canada grants funding to two economic players in the Mauricie region: Bioénergie La Tuque and Industries John Lewis

LA TUQUE, QC, July 6, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (CED)

Businesses need to be able to rely on adequate resources to create and commercialize their new products. The Government of Canada is committed to supporting innovative Canadian enterprises. As a true economic driver, innovation is the key to success because it generates growth that benefits enterprises and communities. These enterprises and communities focus on innovation to diversify strategically and develop lasting regional competitive advantages. Therefore, support for communities' transition and diversification is a priority for the Government of Canada.

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Member of Parliament for Saint-Maurice—Champlain and Minister of International Trade, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for CED, announced that Bioénergie La Tuque and Industries John Lewis have been granted a total of $1,069,250 in financial assistance, in the form of repayable contributions.

Bioénergie La Tuque will receive $500,000 to carry out the first phase of technico-economic feasibility studies required to start up a biorefinery in La Tuque to convert residual forest biomass. Since its creation in February 2015, Bioénergie La Tuque has worked to identify and implement conditions conducive to the development of the bioenergy sector, including biofuels, in its territory.

The $569,250 contribution to Industries John Lewis will enable it to acquire a third finishing line and moulding equipment for its plant in La Tuque, to support the growth of this leader in the manufacturing of a value-added product. This manufacturing enterprise, involved in secondary and tertiary wood processing, has successfully diversified its products by using white birch logs to manufacture sticks for the food industry.

These two projects will inject an investment of more than $2.6 million in the region and help create and keep well-paying jobs for the middle class in the Mauricie region.

The funding is awarded under CED's Quebec Economic Development Program (QEDP). CED is one of the six regional development agencies under the responsibility of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.

Quotes

"The Government of Canada is committed to promoting the role of innovation as an important way of encouraging business and community diversification and growth. That is why we are pleased to support the development of Bioénergie La Tuque and Industries John Lewis."

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Member of Parliament for Saint-Maurice—Champlain and Minister of International Trade

"Canada's manufacturing sector is a cornerstone of the economy, accounting for more than 10% of the country's gross domestic product and employing 1.7 million Canadians. Its performance is central to the overall health of the economy. That is why we are investing in Canada's large wood industry. These investments will allow the manufacturing sector to remain a key source of jobs, trade and innovation in Canada."

The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister responsible for CED

"The Industries John Lewis plant is a source of pride for the Groupe Rémabec. We have spared no effort in R&D and innovation over the past 20 years. This is the vision that allows us to maintain our position among global leaders, but we can see even further ahead. This contribution from the federal government will help Industries John Lewis continue its development and remain an outstanding showcase for Quebec and Canadian know-how on the international market."

Réjean Paré, President and Chief Executive Officer, Groupe Rémabec

"CED's contribution to Bioénergie La Tuque's biorefinery project will help maintain the tempo required for our 50-member team to produce the studies in a timely manner. The BELT project requires support from the various levels of government, as well as industry. Today's announcement is therefore encouraging, and we thank CED for its investment."

Patrice Mangin, Director General, Bioénergie La Tuque

"This significant contribution by Canada  Economic Development for Quebec Regions will further de-risk the Bioénergie La Tuque project and lead to the creation of jobs and the development of an innovation-based bioeconomy in the Mauricie region. Collaborations between governments, industry and research centres as demonstrated by the Bioénergie LaTuque project, are a clear example of how a future bioeconomy innovation supercluster can help diversify and grow the economy as well as contribute to Canada's climate change objectives."

Pierre Lapointe, President and Chief Executive Officer, FPInnovations

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SOURCE Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions

For further information: Media Relations, Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions, Tel.: 514-283-7443, Email: dec.media.ced@canada.ca


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