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Archived - Harper Government Launches Key Aerospace and Defence Program

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Saint-Hubert, Quebec, September 4, 2013—The Honourable James Moore, Minister of Industry, today announced the launch of the new Technology Demonstration Program, a key Economic Action Plan 2013 commitment. This program will fund large-scale technology demonstration projects that typically require the integration of several different technologies and the coordination of activities of many partners.

"Canada's aerospace and defence industries make important contributions to our economy, support high-skilled jobs across the country, and are leading investors in research and development," said Minister Moore. "Our government is proud to launch this new program that will support large-scale technology demonstration projects with strong commercialization potential and that will promote cross-industry collaboration."

"Technology demonstration is a vital part of bringing innovation to market, but it is very complex and involves high levels of risk," said Jim Quick, President and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada. "The program announced today will help our companies to develop and produce the kinds of cutting-edge products that are at the heart of what makes Canadian aerospace companies the best in the world. We are very pleased with this announcement and thank Minister Moore and the government for their ongoing support of this important industry."

Demonstration activities involve moving new technologies out of the laboratory and testing them in real-world settings to ensure they fulfill their intended use in a safe and efficient manner. Companies often find it difficult to finance this step in the technology development process, limiting the speed and scale with which innovation is advanced.

"This event honours the government's commitment in Budget 2013 to support innovation in Canada's defence industries," said Tim Page, President of the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries. "We believe that this program will help to create knowledge-based jobs in the defence and security sector and strengthen the ability of Canadian industry to support Canada's Armed Forces with world-class capability across the land, sea and air domains. It will also contribute to greater Canadian success in export markets around the world."

Today's announcement kicks off the initial call for project proposals, with statements of interest for the first intake into this new program due by December 6, 2013. Approved projects will be announced by fall 2014. There will be yearly calls for applications.

Projects must be led by an original equipment manufacturer or a Tier 1 integrator. Lead companies will bring together small and medium-sized Canadian-based companies to promote the development of supply chains as well as accredited Canadian universities and colleges or their affiliated research institutes to promote knowledge transfer.

Minister Moore noted that the government is continuing to study the findings and recommendations of the Review of Aerospace and Space Programs and Policies, which were released last fall. Among the proposed recommendations were improvements to the Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative, which is receiving an injection of close to $1 billion over five years as announced in Economic Action Plan 2013.

The Technology Demonstration Program will cover up to 50 percent of eligible project costs, including equipment located in broadly accessible hubs to fuel innovation. The maximum funding that may be allocated in each application cycle is $54 million. For more information on the Technology Demonstration Program, please visit the Industrial Technologies Office website.

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For further information (media only), please contact:

Jessica Fletcher
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable James Moore
Minister of Industry

Media Relations
Industry Canada

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