Innovation and the 2016 Federal Budget – Synopsis

The 2016 by the Liberal government has enacted new provisions for innovation and green technology. This government has re-emphasized that innovation is a key driver of the economy, and must invest in order to become and world leader in technology creation. To achieve this objective, the government has targeted investment to 4 specific streams to boost innovation.

  1. Entrepreneurship – Extended investment through enhanced funding for incubators and accelerators, internships, apprenticeships and immigration policy. By 2017-18, the government has promised to provide funding of $150 million dollars.
  2. Science and Technology – Increasing funding for academia, federal laboratories and related foundations. Aggregate funding between 2016-18 will increase funding by approximately $1.75 billion dollars.
  3. Innovation Infrastructure – Increased funding to the NRC – IRAP and development agencies across Canada. IRAP in particular is earmarked to receive an additional $50 million dollars in 2016-17.
  4. Commercialization and Growth – Scaling the mandates of BDC, EDC and extending trade agreements across the world.

On a related side note, the federal government has reduced the small business tax rate to 10.5%, and the refund percentages for 2016-17 have not been changed. While we believe that more measures could have been taken to improve innovation support in Canada, this is generally a good budget for companies conducting research and development activities in Canada. It has also reinforced the notion that the Canadian government is committed to supporting the growth of broad-based industry innovation ranging from agriculture and mining, to high-tech and biotechnology to green energy technologies.

More details about innovation support within the 2016 federal budget can be found in the budget summary at We will continue to add more information to this blog as specific programs and measures are announced to provide more details regarding access to this funding.