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Ottawa expanding business innovation fund to cover all sectors

Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains announced the expansion of Ottawa's strategic innovation fund at the McMaster Innovation Park in Hamilton on July 5. Anthony Urciuoli/CHML

OTTAWA – The federal government is broadening the scope of its $1.26-billion fund to support innovation-related business investments to include companies from all industrial sectors.

Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains announced today at McMaster Innovation Park in Hamilton that Ottawa’s so-called strategic innovation fund will no longer be restricted to just a handful of sectors in Canada.

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The fund was announced in the federal budget and designed to allocate the money over five years to support research and development, the scale-up of high-potential companies and efforts to attract investment to Canada.

The budget described it as a consolidation of several “business innovation” programs, including existing funds to support the automotive, aerospace, space and defence sectors.

READ MORE: Canada ranks 15th on Global Innovation Index: Here’s where we fall behind

The spring budget had also said companies from sectors such as clean technology and agri-food would be eligible.

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The program will now offer a mixture of repayable contributions and non-repayable contributions to firms in all sectors.

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