Government of Canada unveils economic growth strategy for Northern
Innovation-targeted strategy will build on the region’s unique strengths and competitive advantages to create middle-class jobs and business opportunities
Canadians living and working in Northern Ontario will benefit from a new targeted approach to economic development with a focus on innovation, thanks to the Government of Canada’s Prosperity and Growth
Strategy for Northern Ontario (PGSNO). The strategic plan was developed following wide consultations with 1000 people including Indigenous, municipal and provincial leaders, as well as innovation and business stakeholders from across the region.
The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for FedNor, and the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, were in Thunder Bay today to unveil the PGSNO, an economic
development plan that will help guide future Government of Canada activities and investments in Northern Ontario. Among other priorities, the regional strategy will invest in the talent and people of Northern Ontario, ensuring communities have the necessary skills for the middle-class jobs of tomorrow.
The PGSNO is focused on three key areas: supporting innovation; growing companies; and building stronger communities:
· Supporting innovation - by expanding and strengthening the regional innovation ecosystem and providing support for incubators, accelerators and clusters;
· Growing companies - by enhancing supports for business start-ups and scale-ups, promoting the adoption of advanced technologies, and increasing the capacity of companies to export; and
· Building stronger communities - by helping municipalities and Indigenous communities better respond to economic development opportunities and challenges.
The development of the PGSNO followed an announcement by Minister Bains in April 2017 which outlined how each of Canada’s six Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) would prepare an economic growth strategy aimed at seizing business and job growth opportunities created by the
"The Prosperity and Growth Strategy for Northern Ontario is the Government of Canada’s forward-thinking approach to help the region innovate, capitalize on business opportunities and create well-paying, middle-class jobs. This nationally coordinated, regionally tailored strategy will help ensure that Northern Ontario can fully benefit from our national Innovation and Skills plan in a way that makes sense to local communities, businesses, and Canadians living and working in the region."
- The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and
Economic Development and Minister responsible for FedNor
"Northern Ontario has a wealth of innovative thinkers, a diversifying economy and tremendous potential. The Prosperity and Growth Strategy for Northern Ontario will position the region for success and will help create more business opportunities, strengthen the middle class and grow our economy."
- The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce
Development and Labour, and Member of Parliament for Thunder
"Under the Prosperity and Growth Strategy for Northern Ontario, we will help the region’s creators and trailblazers position Northern Ontario communities and businesses for long-term economic growth and
sustainability. Harnessing the power of Northern Ontario’s bright minds is key to enabling us to compete globally, developing new products and creating jobs for middle-class Canadians."
- Don Rusnak, Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay—Rainy River
"Ontario welcomes Canada's commitment to helping foster economic growth and opportunity in Northern Ontario. We are particularly pleased that Canada is recognizing the multi-generational mineral development potential contained within the Ring of Fire. Our government is working hard with local indigenous communities to lay the groundwork necessary to construct all season road access to local remote communities and the mine site. Ontario looks forward to continuing our dialogue with
Canada as to how we can advance this project forward together for the benefit of the local communities, Ontario and Canada as a whole."
- Michael Gravelle, Ontario's Minister of Northern Development and
· Budget 2018 provided an additional $511 million over five years to the regional development agencies to support the national Innovation and Skills Plan.
· As part of this total, FedNor is being allocated $28 million over five years. This is in addition to the $25 million over five years it received in Budget 2017.
· As part of its engagement activities to develop the PGSNO, FedNor heard from approximately 1000 stakeholders from communities across the region, including participants from government, industry, communities and First Nations, post-secondary institutions, innovation
centres, and others.
Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic
Development and Minister responsible for FedNor
“ Today is about our governments commitment to growing the economy and growing jobs. We put forward a prosperity growth strategy for Northern Ontario. This is a comprehensive plan that will focus on investing in innovation in communities and towns. It will build on other investments we have made in NW Ontario, that Patty Hajdu and I have championed. For example $83 million to upgrade our post secondary institutions in the area of innovation, science, engineering as well as in communities say
with the Mattawa First Nations with high speed internet infrastructure.”
“ The health eco system is important and how can we can commercilize the research is underway. We have increased funding for FEDNOR by $53 million in the last two budgets. We met with over 1000 stakeholders to see what the challenges are and where the opportunities lie.”
Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development
“ Manitouwadge a small community andmay need help with a regional focus on development say in forestry innovation and can they take advantage of that. It may be supporting small businesses with innovative ways to supply products or services eg in Greenstone a print shop opened and
helps people there access services like passport photos. How do we support smaller business say with sustainable farming all the way to larger industry solutions.”