ST. CATHARINES, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Sept. 26, 2013) - The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), along with Rick Dykstra, Member of Parliament for St. Catharines, visited the St. Catharines area today to discuss the role of FedDev Ontario in the region and seek input on future Agency programs for southern Ontario.
"Our Government is focused on the priorities of Canadians, including creating jobs and the conditions for a strong, prosperous economy in southern Ontario," said Minister Goodyear. "I'm pleased to be here in St. Catharines with my colleague, MP Dykstra to participate in a roundtable to discuss how we can continue to create excellent programs that benefit the businesses and individuals in this community."
"I am proud to welcome Minister Goodyear to St. Catharines," said MP Dykstra. "Our conversations today focused on creating prosperity and a strong economic climate, and I am glad that the Minister shares our vision for generating this success in our community and across southern Ontario."
At today's roundtable, stakeholders provided their views on potential areas of focus for FedDev Ontario programs including: support for innovation and commercialization, business growth, productivity and communities.
The Minister and MP followed the roundtable with a tour of Brock BioLinc, which received $843,500 in FedDev Ontario funding to help Brock University create a business incubator called BioLinc, designed to establish closer ties between leading bioscience researchers and local entrepreneurs.
"This investment has helped Brock to enhance the capacity of our new bioscience research complex to foster innovation," said Jack Lightstone, President, Brock University. "These funds have also enabled us to advance one of our key strategic priorities, which is to partner with local businesses and business development agencies in the area to provide incubation services for the bio-manufacturing sector of our region's economy."
Finally, Minister Goodyear and MP Dykstra made their way to Biolyse Pharma, to announce an investment of up to $2.9 million for the company under FedDev Ontario's Prosperity Initiative. The funding will be used to expand the company's state-of-the-art research and production facilities, at which injectable chemotherapy drugs are manufactured for sale in Canadian and international markets.
"The significance of this repayable contribution is an encouragement to Biolyse to move forward with its development program, which will expand its line of vital medicines made by Canadians for Canadians," said Claude Mercure, Owner of Biolyse Pharma.
Since its launch in 2009, the Agency has made significant progress in creating jobs and growing the economy. However, southern Ontario remains under considerable pressure, and more than ever our businesses and workers need to be more innovative and productive, and strive to access new markets.
In Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government of Canada demonstrated its continued commitment to workers, families and communities in southern Ontario with the renewal of FedDev Ontario.
Economic Action Plan 2013 provides $920 million for FedDev Ontario over five years, including $200 million for a new Advanced Manufacturing Fund in Ontario, starting on April 1, 2014.
FedDev Ontario will also continue to promote business development, job creation and self-reliant communities in rural eastern Ontario by extending the Eastern Ontario Development Program for five years.
With renewed funding, FedDev Ontario will continue to act as a champion for the region supporting the development of a prosperous and globally competitive southern Ontario economy.
Details of new programming will be posted on the Agency's website at www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca as they become available, so stakeholders are encouraged to check back regularly.
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