- Over the next three years, Travel Alberta’s investment framework will contribute over $15 million dollars annually to enhance and grow visitor products and experiences. Investing in Alberta’s visitor economy will diversify and drive economic growth, creates jobs and supports businesses. Two funds are available that you can apply for now: the Cooperative Investment Fund and the Product Development Fund. For details visit https://industry.travelalberta.com/programs-tools/tourism-investment-program.
- For employers across our region who are seeking to recruit and fill vacant positions, the Federal government has announced changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker program that will make that program more accessible to a number of employers. For further information visit https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/news/2022/04/government-of-canada-announces-workforce-solutions-road-map--further-changes-to-the-temporary-foreign-worker-program-to-address-labour-shortages-ac.html.
Update: Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP)
AAIP is an economic immigration program that nominates people for permanent residence in Alberta). Two new immigration streams have recently been announced.
- The Rural Entrepreneur Stream - The Rural Entrepreneur Stream allows the Government of Alberta to nominate qualified and capable immigrant entrepreneurs who intend on supporting the economic growth and revitalization of rural Alberta communities by establishing a new or buying an existing business. The Government of Alberta is collaborating with rural communities to deliver this immigration stream. Rural communities interested in participating in Rural Entrepreneur Stream are required to fill out the Community Enrolment Form, as well as designate an individual as the community contact person and representative. The community name and contact person’s information will be highlighted on the Alberta Advantage Immigration Program website. Please find attached RES fact sheet or visit https://www.alberta.ca/aaip-rural-entrepreneur-stream.aspx for program guidelines and eligibility requirements.
o For any specific RES Stream questions please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- The Rural Renewal Stream - The Rural Renewal Stream addresses current labour needs and skill shortages in rural Alberta communities and helps newcomers settle into the community. This stream requires a community to apply to the Government of Alberta for community designation. This stream is community-driven. A candidate must be endorsed by a designated community and meet all criteria for the Rural Renewal Stream. Do not apply to the province of Alberta if you do not have a community support letter. Once designated, the community then works with employers to attract and recruit newcomers and collaborates with a settlement providing organization to retain newcomers by sharing information on settlement supports. This may include accommodation, education, health care and services such as language training. Please find attached the RRS fact sheet or visit https://www.alberta.ca/aaip-rural-renewal-stream-community-designation.aspx for program guidelines and eligibility requirements.
o For any specific RRS questions please email: email@example.com or once you have decided to proceed you may contact myself Bryon Anderson directly at firstname.lastname@example.org for Lethbridge and area or Cheryl Olenick at Cheryl.email@example.com for Medicine Hat and area.
- The Community Initiatives Program (CIP) provides funding for organizations that create opportunities for Albertans to engage with and help develop their communities. Application deadline is May 15. CIP outcomes are to:
o strengthen leadership and organizational capacity of community organizations
o support community-driven goals that have a public benefit
- The Innovation Employment Grant encourages economic growth by supporting small and medium-sized businesses that invest in research and development (R&D) with a grant worth up to 20% of qualifying expenditures. The grant provides qualified corporations with up to $4 million in annual R&D spending through:
o an 8% payment for eligible R&D spending carried out in Alberta, up to the corporation’s base level of spending.
o an enhanced 20% payment for eligible R&D spending that exceeds the corporation’s base spending level.
o A firm’s base level of spending is determined by calculating the corporation’s average qualifying R&D spending over the previous 2 years.
- As this grant is based on expenditures that also qualify for the federal SR&ED program, payments will not be processed until qualifying expenses have been verified by the Canada Revenue Agency and are confirmed to have been undertaken in Alberta by Tax and Revenue Administration.
- The purpose of the Value-added Program is to support growth of Alberta’s value-added food processors and bio-industrial processors. The Value-added Program helps to advance economic recovery within Alberta through investment in projects that increase company sales, expand market opportunities and create jobs in Alberta.
- The On-Farm Value-added Program supports economic recovery through investment in projects, company sales growth, market expansion and the creation of jobs in Alberta. This program is designed exclusively for primary producers who are adding value past primary production.
Applications for the Digital Economy Program are open until March 2023
To be eligible for the Digital Economy Program, businesses must fit the following criteria:
- be registered in Alberta;
- have zero to 49 employees (this includes self-employed business owners with no employees); and,
- be a home-based or commercial business.
- The federal government has three targeted support programs for the heavily impacted tourism sector. Deadline May 7, 2022.
o Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program, provides support through the wage and rent subsidy programs, to hotels, tour operators, travel agencies, restaurants, etc.
o Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program, provides support to organizations not eligible for the Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program and deeply affected since the start of the pandemic.
o Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit, provides $300 a week to support eligible workers effected by government imposed lockdowns.
- Financial assistance to purchase, build, renovate, or upgrade public-use community facilities. The application deadline for the next intake of the CFEP small funding stream is May 15 and the t he annual application deadline for the CFEP large funding stream is June 15.
- Small and medium sized companies may access up to $50,000 in funding to assist with international market development activities. We cover up to 50% of costs for export marketing of your products and services in international markets where you have little or no sales. Opening Jan 10, 2022
Jobs and Growth Fund – (Attached)
- The Jobs and Growth Fund provides funding to businesses and organizations to help create more jobs and position Canada for an inclusive recovery and long-term growth. Projects need to contribute to one or more of the following:
o Support the transition to a green economy
o Foster an inclusive recovery
o Preserve competitiveness and enhance resilience through productivity improvement and digital adoption
o Strengthen capacity in sectors critical to Canada’s recovery and growth
- Product development/Development and enhancement of tourism experiences to help tourism businesses adapt to the ‘new normal’, to modernize tourism offerings and to help the sector adopt more environmentally sustainable practices.
INNOVATION – FUNDING, SUPPORT AND EVENT OPPORTUNITIES:
- Your career in AI is waiting! Built for both technical and non-technical folks, Kickstart is an early career development program for women and gender-diverse individuals.
- The Connector for short, is an openly accessible, online portal connecting entrepreneurs, industry, inventors, and students to innovation and entrepreneurship programs, advisors, and support. The space also integrates an online meeting platform for hosting virtual conferences and events.
Agriculture and Agrifood Canada - Agricultural Clean Technology Program
- The Adoption Stream will support the adoption of clean technologies, with a priority on those that meaningfully reduce GHG emissions. (Note. Project Summary Forms will continue to be accepted but only for funding activities starting as of April 1, 2022).
- The Research and Innovation Stream will support pre-market innovation including research, development, demonstration and commercialization of agricultural clean technologies.
- Three main sectors of activity:
o Digital industries and information and communications technologies (ICT)
o Life sciences and digital health
- of note, the United Kingdom digital energy solutions, Cleantech, application deadline January 21, 2022
- ExploreIP: Canada’s IP Marketplace: a new, online resource for businesses to explore possible licensing and collaboration opportunities with public sector patent holders. ExploreIP now has a “COVID-19 related” category to help users find technologies that could help combat COVID-19.
- ScaleUp and Growth Accelerators help businesses transform at a faster rate. These accelerators provide intensive learning experiences where mentors compress years of experiential learning into a few months. Alberta Scaleup and Growth Accelerator Program (Scaleup GAP) will accelerate Alberta’s companies to scale and grow and to propel digital transformation. These programs are open to companies from Alberta, Canada and around the world.
- Innovation Canada’s programs and services, including the AGS, are designed to help businesses innovate, create jobs and grow Canada’s economy. They work with colleagues and partners across the innovation and investment ecosystems to help businesses develop effective strategies and growth plans by connecting them with the right partners, programs and services they need to grow. In the AGS program they are looking for incorporated Canadian companies with year-over-year revenue growth, especially over the past three years, who are export and innovation-focused, generating at least $3-5 million annually and have the capacity and willingness to grow.
Continuous intake innovation programs: