Yesterday afternoon, Hon. Bill Morneau, Canada’s Minister of Finance rose to deliver the 2017 Budget. Much of the media precluding and following the Budget focused on the investments in child care, social infrastructure (housing), and job training. There were, however, some noticeable commitments to enhance business support programs. These include:

Strategic Innovation Fund
Budget 2017 proposes a new $1.26B five-year business support program which consolidates other programs like the Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI), and some auto funds. Priority sectors for the new program are said to include: Aerospace & Defense, Automotive, Clean Tech, and Agri-Food.

Impact Canada Fund
A new program designed to address key challenges in Canada’s socioeconomic landscape. The first two challenges are addressed by these streams:

  • Clean Technology Stream – $75M over 2 years to help rural and remote communities reduce reliance on diesel.
  • Smart Cities Stream – $300M over 11 years

Growing Forward 2
Manufacturers in food processing will be glad to know that another popular funding program, Growing Forward 2 (GF2) will be re-funded in 2018 (when the initial program was set to expire). The GF2 framework will be presented later this year for the 2018 launch.

Other New Programs

  • Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative – $400M over 3 years to leverage a $1.5B fund in Canada’s private equity space
  • Innovative Solutions Canada – $50M for a 1 year procurement program whereby government will act as a first customer to test and validate innovative Canadian technology

Any companies looking to make a capital investment in their Canadian based operations over the next several years should contact S&A to ensure they are leveraging all available funding programs at the provincial and federal levels.