National Research Council Canada-NRC

National Research Council Canada-NRC

April 06, 2009 13:10 ET

Government of Canada Speeds Up Support for Canadian Business Innovation and Youth Employment

DARTMOUTH, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - April 6, 2009) - More small- and medium-sized enterprises will have access to the capital and expertise needed to commercialize technology, while Canadian post-secondary graduates will gain valuable employment opportunities - all thanks to an immediate investment by the Government of Canada in the National Research Council's Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP).

The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology), made the announcement today in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.

"Our government is investing more in science and technology because this is how to create jobs, strengthen the economy and improve the quality of life of Canadians," said Minister of State Goodyear. "Expanding this program will help 1,400 more small- and medium-sized businesses innovate. It will also give 1,000 more university and college graduates valuable work experience."

The new investment is worth $200 million. Of this amount, $170 million will go to double NRC-IRAP's contributions to small and medium-sized businesses. Another $30 million will be used to help those businesses hire more than 1,000 new post-secondary graduates through NRC-IRAP's Youth Employment Program.

The federal government passed a special budget allocation to make the funding available two months earlier than usual, as of April 1, 2009. The government increased to $1 million the maximum amount for which a firm can apply under IRAP. Businesses can also apply for up to $30,000 for each graduate internship - double the previous amount.

"Investing in science and technology is critical for developing highly skilled people and improving the long-term competitiveness of Canadian firms," said NRC President Dr. Pierre Coulombe. "That's why NRC-IRAP is helping innovative Canadian businesses grow stronger, faster and bigger."

At the same time, Minister of State Goodyear presented an NRC Canadian Innovation Leader certificate to Dartmouth-based Acadian Seaplants Limited in recognition of the firm's positive contributions to the Canadian economy.

Exporting to more than 70 countries around the world, Acadian Seaplants develops innovative techniques for cultivating seaweed products in land-based tanks.

"NRC-IRAP support is playing a critical role in our success," said Jean-Paul Deveau, president of Acadian Seaplants Limited. "The capacity and expertise to develop and commercialize new technologies is what gives our company its competitive advantage in the international export market."

About NRC and NRC-IRAP

Recognized globally for research and innovation, NRC is a leader in the development of an innovative, knowledge-based economy for Canada through science and technology.

NRC-IRAP is committed to working with small and medium-sized enterprises while they realize their full potential, turning knowledge and innovation into strategic opportunities, jobs and prosperity for all Canadians.

For more information, please visit the websites of NRC ( or NRC-IRAP (

Contact Information

  • National Research Council Canada
    Media Relations
    Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
    Minister of State (Science and Technology)
    Gary Toft
    Director of Communications