Industry Canada

Industry Canada

May 22, 2009 17:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports Vancouver International Jazz Festival

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 22, 2009) - The Honourable Jim Abbott, Member of Parliament for Kootenay-Columbia, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism), today announced the Government of Canada's investment of over $700 000 to support the Vancouver International Jazz Festival.

"We are proud to be investing in the Vancouver International Jazz Festival," said Mr. Abbott. "The Marquee Tourism Events Program highlights our government's recognition of the immense impact that the Vancouver International Jazz Festival and other such marquee events have on the visitor economy."

The Marquee Tourism Events Program (MTEP) is a Government of Canada initiative under Canada's Economic Action Plan designed to provide $100 million in funding over two years for marquee tourism events in support of the visitor economy. This program will help events that attract a large number of international visitors to maintain and enhance their appeal. It will also help events that are established nationally to gain an international presence.

"The Vancouver International Jazz Festival welcomes this unprecedented opportunity to strengthen the scope of the Festival, expand its reach and bolster the local economy with significant new funding," said Julie Smith, Executive Director of the Coastal Jazz & Blues Society. "Our partnership with the Government of Canada in this initiative will create a very positive ripple effect in our community."

Presented by the Coastal Jazz & Blues Society, the Vancouver International Jazz Festival is one of Canada's largest music festivals and has been the winner of Georgia Straight's Straight Choices Award for Best Festival, five years running. Known for its distinctive programming, the Festival brings an audience of more than 500 000 face to face with an extensive range of musical talent.

The Vancouver International Jazz Festival was one of several recipients to receive funding through the MTEP Summer 2009 funding stream. This one-time injection of funds is aimed at providing immediate assistance to some of the largest summer marquee tourism events across Canada. The Festival and other funding recipients put forth comprehensive proposals to the Government of Canada meeting the eligibility criteria and objectives of the program.

The MTEP Summer 2009 funding will allow the Vancouver International Jazz Festival to focus on the development of a comprehensive international marketing and promotion strategy. This strategy will help build the capacity of the Festival to attract tourists from across Canada, the U.S. West Coast and the Pacific Rim by communicating its many unique offerings. The Festival is at the forefront of the city's rich cultural scene, and funding under MTEP Summer 2009 will offer a twist to the traditional tourist promotions and will help the Festival deliver enhanced world-class programs and experiences.

The MTEP complements the numerous federally funded, tourism-related programs that are part of the Government of Canada's Economic Action Plan. These programs, which provide measures to support Canada's economy, stimulate the growth of tourism and contribute to the development of Canada's visitor economy over the long term, include:

- $40 million over two years to the Canadian Tourism Commission for domestic and international marketing; and

- $150 million over two years for national parks and historic sites.

For more information, please visit the Marquee Tourism Events Program ( website. For additional information on Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit


The Marquee Tourism Events Program (MTEP)

Canada's Economic Action Plan provides $100 million in funding over two years for marquee tourism events that draw a significant number of tourists to Canada.

Marquee tourism events provide significant cultural, sporting and recreational opportunities for Canadians and attract national and international audiences to all parts of the country. Support for these events contributes to Canada's visitor economy by sustaining or increasing the level of tourism and tourism-related spending that benefits hotels, restaurants and a variety of small and medium-sized businesses.

As a result, the Marquee Tourism Events Program (MTEP) will provide funding to support annually recurring, world-class events that generate significant levels of tourism and that aim to attract a significant amount of international media attention to Canada as a tourism destination. Events must be well-established and have a tradition of programming excellence.

The Government of Canada recognizes that tourism is an important driver of economic activity in all regions of Canada and that further expansion of Canada's tourism industry can increase tourism export revenues and provide stimulus to the economy at a critical time.

The program requirements are strict and targeted. All interested applicants for the MTEP must demonstrate how their event will contribute to the objectives of the program to help events deliver enhanced world-class programs and experiences, thereby increasing or sustaining the number of tourists from within and outside Canada. If funding is provided, all applicants will be required to provide annual audited financial statements for the years in which funding is received and the two years following the completion of the proposed project. An independent study examining the economic impact of the funding is also required. Applicants will also be subject to monitoring and independent audits for the funds received.

The economic impact of the tourism industry is significant, representing 2 percent of Canada's gross domestic product, over 662 900 jobs in all regions across the country and $20 billion in government revenues.

Canada's Economic Action Plan is intended to stimulate the economy and invest in our long-term growth. The tourism initiatives in this plan lay out a framework for branding Canada as a tourism destination of choice for domestic and international visitors.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Diane Ablonczy
    Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism)
    Catherine Godbout
    613-668-5406 (cell)
    Industry Canada
    Media Relations