Report of the Science, Technology, and Innovation Council: The Board of Trade issues a call for action to promote innovation



    MONTREAL, May 21 /CNW Telbec/ - During a presentation of the principal
findings of the State of the nation 2008 report by Canada's Science,
Technology, and Innovation Council, Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, issued a call for Canada-wide action
to promote innovation and competitiveness.
    In the presence of more than a hundred members of the business community,
Leblanc and three members of the Science, Technology, and Innovation Council -
Heather Munroe-Blum, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University; Guy
Rouleau, M.D., Ph. D., holder of the Canada research chair in genetics of the
nervous system, and Université de Montréal professor; and Eric Bergeron,
President and CEO of Optosecurity Inc. - described the state of innovation in
Canada.
    "Our metropolitan area is resolutely oriented toward the knowledge and
innovation economy. We have set in place effective tools to support research
and development; we expect much from technology transfer; we encourage our
companies to adopt the latest innovations as quickly as possible; and we are
working to strengthen our capacities at the commercialization stage. Yet the
Council's report is clear: we must do more," observed Leblanc.
    "Competition in terms of innovation and the economy is global, and our
performance in the area of innovation must be competitive at the international
level. We are concerned about the average performance of Canada observed by
the Council. Its report stresses the need to adopt a coherent, well-funded
strategy at every level of the public and private sectors. We have an
obligation to raise our sights," continued Leblanc.
    "For this reason, we are proud to help disseminate the report's
conclusions and spread the word that we must grasp the urgency of the
situation and work more coherently to improve our performance in the area of
innovation. Companies, universities, and governments all have a responsibility
to work together to enhance Canada's competitiveness. Considering the quality
of the researchers and institutions of higher education in our metropolis,
there can be no doubt that we have the talent to rise to this challenge. It's
up to us to convince decision makers to devote the necessary resources to take
full advantage of our enormous potential," concluded Leblanc.

    The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal has some 7,000 members. Its
primary mission is to represent the interests of the business community of
Greater Montréal and to provide individuals, merchants, and local businesses
of all sizes with a variety of specialized services to help them achieve their
full potential in terms of innovation, productivity and competitiveness. The
Board of Trade is Quebec's leading private economic development organization.




For further information:

For further information: Sylvie Paquette, Coordinator, Media relations,
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, (514) 871-4000, ext. 4015,
sylvie.paquette@ccmm.qc.ca


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