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Natural Resources Canada
2010/62
August 2, 2010

Government of Canada Launches Investments in Forest Industry Transformation Program – Vancouver


VANCOUVER — Today, the Government of Canada launched a program to help expand opportunities for Canada’s forestry sector through the development of innovative projects and technologies. Stockwell Day, President of the Treasury Board, Minister for the Pacific Gateway and Minister Responsible for British Columbia, on behalf of Christian Paradis, Minister of Natural Resources, launched the $100-million Investments in Forest Industry Transformation (IFIT) program in Vancouver and made a call for proposals that could receive IFIT funding.

“This Government continues to invest in the transformation of Canada’s forest industry,” said Minister Day. “This program will encourage and support the next generation of forest products, and I am confident that this will have a very positive impact in communities across Canada, including here in British Columbia.”

The purpose of the IFIT program, which was first introduced in Canada’s Jobs and Growth Budget 2010, is to demonstrate and deploy new and advanced technologies in the forest sector through investments in innovative processes. The goal is to encourage the development of a wider range of innovative technologies, which would help secure a more prosperous future for Canada’s forestry industry and the communities who depend on it. Forest sector companies that have existing facilities in Canada, including those that have been recently affected by the global economic downturn, could be eligible for IFIT support.

The IFIT program will complement previous and ongoing investments by the Government of Canada such as Sustainable Development Technology Canada’s Clean Technology Fund.

As part of its continued support for Canada’s forest sector, the Government of Canada is investing $170 million over two years under Canada’s Economic Action Plan to help forest companies develop new products and processes and capitalize on new market opportunities internationally. As well, the $1-billion Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program is helping qualified pulp and paper mills improve their environmental performance. Participating mills will become leaders in energy efficiency or the production of renewable energy as they create and sustain jobs in their industry.

This program is consistent with Canada’s international trade obligations, including the Softwood Lumber Agreement. Any costs associated with the production or export of softwood lumber products are not eligible under the IFIT program.

Today’s announcement opens the first call for proposals under the IFIT program. Individuals interested in learning how to apply for funding under the Investments in Forest Industry Transformation program are encouraged to visit: forest-transformation.nrcan.gc.ca.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

Treasury Board President Stockwell Day and Natural Resources Minister Christian Paradis have launched the Government of Canada’s $100-million Investments in Forest Industry Transformation program, or IFIT. The new program will support forest industry transformation across Canada by helping the sector develop a more diversified portfolio of products and markets.

Media may contact:

Richard Walker
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
613-996-2007

or

Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
613-992-4447

The general public may contact:

Mon.–Fri., 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. EDT
Telephone: 613-995-0947
TTY: 613-996-4397
(teletype for the hearing-impaired)
E-mail: questions@nrcan.gc.ca

The following media backgrounders are available at www.nrcan.gc.ca/media/index-eng.php:

  1. Government of Canada Takes Action to Support the Implementation of Advanced Technologies in the Forest Sector
  2. Federal Assistance for Canada’s Forest Sector and Communities

NRCan's news releases and backgrounders are available at www.nrcan.gc.ca/media/index-eng.php.