By Teri Kirk
Many businesses are seeking information on the new incentives announced in last month’s federal and Ontario Budgets, and how their company can benefit. Here’s everything you need to know about new funding opportunities for your business:
New Federal Funds
• $100M for the New Automotive Supplier Innovation Program. The Budget proposes a new five-year, $100M fund to support the product development and technology demonstration activities of businesses within the automotive supply chain. The fund would target innovative SMEs that create products or processes that help meet growing global demand for fuel efficient vehicles and automated technologies.
• $86M for the Forestry Sector. The government proposes to invest $86M over two years starting in 2016-17 to extend the Forest Innovation Program, which supports R&D and technology transfer, and the Expanding Market Opportunities Program, which supports export opportunities.
• $56.4M for R&D Internships. The Mitacs Accelerate Program would receive $56.4M over four years, starting in 2016-17, to support 1,500 new graduate-level R&D internships within businesses. This would bring the total number of annual internships under the Program to 6,000.
• $50M for a New Export Market Development Program. The Budget proposes the creation of a new $50M, five-year export market development program (official fund name to be announced) to help SMEs pursue new export opportunities, with a particular focus on high-growth emerging markets. The program would cover a part of the costs associated with market research, participating in trade fairs and missions, shipping prototypes, and pilot projects. Approximately 500 to 1,000 exporters would participate in the program per year.
• $22M for the Mining Sector. The mining sector would benefit from $12M in funding over five years to renew Natural Resources Canada’s Targeted Geoscience Initiative. The Initiative supports private sector exploration, access to qualified workers, and extends the life of existing mines, among other measures.
• $12M for the AgriMarketing Program. The existing AgriMarketing Program, which promotes Canadian agricultural and agri-food products abroad, would receive $12M in additional funding over two years starting in 2016-17. The new funding would help enhance Canada’s presence in the highly competitive global market.
• Manufacturing Investment Tax Incentive. The government proposes a 10-year program that would provide manufacturers with an accelerated capital cost allowance (CCA) at a rate of 50% (instead of 30%) on a declining-balance basis for newly acquired eligible assets. This translates to a greater ability for manufacturers to acquire new equipment for long-term projects.
• $250M for the Ontario Youth Jobs Strategy. The Ontario Government reported in Budget 2015 that youth unemployment remains “unacceptably high” in the Province. To tackle this issue, the Province would invest $250M over the next two years, bringing the total budget for its Youth Jobs Strategy to $565M. The new funds will be used to support a suite of programs serving 150,000 youth for skills development, labour market connections, entrepreneurship, and innovation. $36M of the new funding would be directed to support apprenticeships over the next two years.
• $200M for the Jobs and Prosperity Fund. Launched in January 2015, the Jobs and Prosperity Fund is a 10-year, $2.5B program that provides funding to projects with costs of more than $10M ($5M for food, beverage, and bio-product manufacturing projects). The Government will increase the Fund’s budget by $200M starting in 2015-26, and extend eligibility to the forestry sector.
• $16M for the Interactive Digital Media (IDM) Fund. The Province will provide $6M in 2015-16 and $10M per year thereafter to renew and redesign the IDM Fund. The Fund will continue to support early product development, IP investment, and company incubation, but co-productions and magazines would now be eligible. Funding for this program will be redirected from cuts to the Ontario Interactive Digital Media Tax Credit (OIDMTC).
• $15M for the Ontario Music Fund. In 2013, the Government established the Ontario Music Fund as a three-year program to support the development of music companies in the Province. The Government will provide $15 million per year to ensure the continuation of the Fund.
• $2.3M for MaRS EXCITE. MaRS EXCITE (Excellence in Clinical Innovation Technology Evaluation), which helps innovators in the health sector accelerate the development and adoption of their technologies, will receive $2.3M in funding over the next four years.
Learn more about funding for your business by using The Funding Portal’s free search tool.