Minister of International Trade Fast Announces $5-Million Allocation to Science and Technology Partnership with Israel

Treaty on bilateral cooperation on science, research and development will lead to high-paying jobs in Canada

(No. 197 - July 10, 2011 - 12:40 p.m. ET) The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today announced that the Government of Canada has allocated $5-million to the Canada-Israel Industrial Research and Development Foundation.

“This $5-million contribution will continue to build on Canada’s collaborative science and technology relationship with Israel,” said Minister Fast. “The Government of Canada is committed to supporting bilateral research projects that have the potential for commercialization and job-creating research and innovation for both countries.”

The Canada-Israel Industrial Research and Development Foundation promotes collaborative research and development between private-sector companies in Canada and Israel with a focus on commercializing new technologies.

The renewal of the Foundation, which is in the form of a treaty, was signed today by Canada’s Ambassador to Israel, Paul Hunt. The treaty will be tabled in Parliament, for consideration, before a final decision is made on ratification.  

Created in 1994, the Foundation has successfully supported more than 70 joint projects. These projects have translated into commercially viable products and services that have created jobs in priority sectors such as information and communications technology, life sciences and renewable energy.

“Canadian scientists and researchers have a world-class reputation for innovation and creativity, and collaborating with key trading partners such as Israel will continue to benefit citizens in both countries,” said Minister Fast. “From transforming sea water into fresh water to developing more fuel-efficient cars and developing new technologies for treating cancer, our researchers will remain at the forefront of new technologies.”

Minister Fast announced the funding following the conclusion of the Canada-Israel Technology Innovation Summit, which took place in Tel Aviv on July 7, 2011. The summit was a result of a meeting in Ottawa in June 2010 between Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

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A backgrounder follows.

For further information, media representatives may contact:

Adam Taylor
Director of Communications and Tour
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway
613-992-7332

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-996-2000
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Backgrounder - Canada-Israel Industrial Research and Development Foundation

Established in 1994, the Canada-Israel Industrial Research and Development Foundation has financed more than 70 bilateral research and development projects. Involving more than 120 Canadian and Israeli companies, these projects focus on the development, marketing and sale of jointly developed products and services. Initial revenues are forecast to surpass $700 million for participating Canadian companies alone, underscoring how Canada-Israel partnerships generate revenues and bolster international trade.

The Foundation is involved in three broad complementary activities:

  • promoting and marketing the benefits of joint Canadian-Israeli R&D collaboration;
  • matching companies in one country with research partners in the other country; and
  • supporting projects by contributing up to 50 percent of the joint R&D costs.

Prompted by the Foundation’s success, the Government of Canada created the International Science and Technology Partnerships Program to deliver similar programs in India, China and Brazil.

To learn more, please visit Innovation, Science and Technology.