Industry Canada

Industry Canada

March 07, 2011 15:30 ET

Harper Government Announces Renewed Investment in Small Business Internship Program During Year of the Entrepreneur

Canada's Economic Action Plan supports job creation by investing in small businesses and students

WATERLOO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 7, 2011) - The Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism), today announced that the Government of Canada has renewed its investment of $3.5 million to create hundreds of internships for post-secondary students across Canada through Canada's Small Business Internship Program (SBIP).

"Our government's top priority is the economy," said Minister of State Moore. "Today's investment in the SBIP is one of the ways our government is helping entrepreneurs while creating jobs for post-secondary students. These young Canadians will gain valuable work experience while contributing to Canada's economic recovery."

The SBIP creates opportunities for post-secondary students in small business by giving them first-hand experience with successful businesses and encouraging their entrepreneurial spirit. It is a collaborative effort between Canadian small businesses, post-secondary institutions and non-government organizations that offers post-secondary students valuable experience working on e-commerce projects.

"The renewal of this investment during the Year of the Entrepreneur recognizes the enormous contribution of our entrepreneurs to Canada's economy," said Peter Braid, Member of Parliament for Kitchener–Waterloo. "The resilience and innovation Canadian entrepreneurs demonstrated during the most challenging days of the global economic recession will guide our future success."

The SBIP is just one example of how the Harper Government is acting on its commitment to small and medium-sized businesses. Year two of Canada's Economic Action Plan has introduced numerous measures to assist small businesses in the short term, while positioning them for long-term growth, including:

  • the Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Innovation Commercialization Program, to support small business innovation;

  • keeping taxes low for Canadian entrepreneurs;

  • the creation of the Vehicle and Equipment Financing Partnership, which will expand financing options and reduce red tape for small and medium-sized finance and leasing companies; and

  • the new Red Tape Reduction Commission, which will review federal regulations in areas where reform is most needed to reduce the compliance burden, especially on small businesses, while safeguarding the health and safety of Canadians.

The SBIP helps small and medium-sized enterprises across Canada improve their productivity and competitiveness by hiring about 400 student interns annually to help with information and communications technology projects. Through this program, the Government is helping to deliver the stability needed to support and protect the economic well-being and financial security of Canadian workers and businesses.  

For more information on the SBIP and its delivery agencies, please visit the SBIP website (www.ic.gc.ca/sbip).

Backgrounder

Small Business Internship Program

Many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) limit their use of information and communications technologies (ICTs) to having an email address or a web page. Industry Canada's Small Business Internship Program (SBIP) allows them to adopt active e-business strategies that will help them prosper.

During 2011, the Year of the Entrepreneur, the Government of Canada has maintained its $3.5-million investment in SBIP to create 400 student internships across Canada for post-secondary students to improve the ICT capacity of SMEs and expose our youth to successful businesses.

Industry Canada has selected 17 organizations from across Canada to act as delivery agencies for the SBIP. They are responsible for selecting businesses to participate in the program. The funding will be divided between the agencies based on the size of the population they serve.

The program provides financial support to qualified SMEs so that they can hire a student intern for a 12-week period. Each intern helps the hiring business to adopt ICTs to increase its productivity and competitiveness. The federal government reimburses a participating SME up to 75 percent of its wage and benefit expenses for the internship.

The SBIP offers promising post-secondary students valuable, hands-on experience working on e-business and ICT projects under the guidance of entrepreneurs. Student interns gain an appreciation of entrepreneurship and the opportunity to explore career options while earning money to continue their education.

The SBIP is a component of the federal Youth Employment Strategy and helps young Canadians acquire on-the-job experience while earning funds to continue their post-secondary education. The SBIP supports Industry Canada's mandate by helping Canadian SMEs become more competitive in the knowledge-based economy.

The program will receive $17.5 million in funding through 2014 as part of the Government of Canada's Youth Employment Strategy. About 400 students benefit from 420 hours of full-time employment through the program annually. About 400 SMEs a year will benefit from improved ICT capacity. The internships may vary based on wage rates in different parts of the country.

The SBIP is just one example of how the Harper Government is acting on its commitment to small and medium-sized businesses. Year two of Canada's Economic Action Plan has introduced numerous measures to assist small businesses in the short term, while positioning them for long-term growth, including:

  • the Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Innovation Commercialization Program, to support small business innovation;

  • keeping taxes low for Canadian entrepreneurs;

  • the creation of the Vehicle and Equipment Financing Partnership, which will expand financing options and reduce red tape for small and medium-sized finance and leasing companies; and

  • the new Red Tape Reduction Commission, which will review federal regulations in areas where reform is most needed to reduce the compliance burden, especially on small businesses, while safeguarding the health and safety of Canadians.

The Government of Canada is committed to supporting small businesses and has established programs and services to stimulate economic growth, create more jobs for Canadians and help businesses compete and succeed in the global marketplace. The government's designation of 2011 as the Year of the Entrepreneur marks a new phase in Canada's Economic Action Plan and begins building on the significant action the government has already taken to help entrepreneurs do what they do best: drive the economy forward.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Rob Moore
    Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism)
    Sean Phelan
    613-943-7009
    or
    Industry Canada
    Media Relations
    613-943-2502