Address by Minister Van Loan at MaRS Centre

No. 2010/64 - Toronto, Ontario - September 13, 2010

Check Against Delivery

I am pleased to be in Toronto today at the MaRS Centre.

I’m here to talk about how the Government of Canada is working with communities across Ontario to help attract and retain foreign investment to this province.

I would first like to acknowledge the presence of a few people: Ilse Treurnicht, Chief Executive Officer of the MaRS Centre, George Hanus, President and Chief Operating Officer of the Greater Toronto Marketing Alliance, and Patrick Draper, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Toronto Region Research Alliance.

Today, I am happy to announce that this year, under the Invest Canada-Community Initiatives program, our government is contributing more than $1.3 million to 21 organizations across Ontario.

This funding will help Ontario-based organizations market their communities to the world; attract, retain and expand foreign direct investment in their communities; and create jobs for Canadians.

During the recent G-20 Summit here in Toronto, we took advantage of the global attention to promote Canada as one of the best places in the world in which to live, work and invest.

We did the same in February during the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

As host of these high-profile events—as well as the G-8 Summit in Muskoka—we highlighted Canada’s competitive advantages and showed the world what our country has to offer:

  • an open and attractive free-enterprise environment, ranked by the Economist Intelligence Unit as the best place to do business in the G-7 this year and over the next four years;
  • the strongest fiscal position in the G-7;
  • low corporate taxes—on track to being the lowest corporate income tax rate in the G-7 by 2012;
  • the fastest predicted economic growth in the G-7 this year, according to both the International Monetary Fund and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD);
  • a skilled workforce, with the highest proportion of post-secondary graduates among countries of the OECD;
  • a vibrant environment for innovation, with one of the most advantageous research and development tax incentive programs in the industrialized world;
  • a strong commitment to good governance and the rule of law; and
  • an outstanding quality of life.

Our government continues to promote Canada’s competitive advantages by investing a total of $3 million this year under the Invest Canada-Community Initiatives program to support local organizations across Canada that seek out foreign investment.

Along with our aggressive trade agenda, this initiative will help Canadian companies and workers compete and win in markets around the world.

Our government has made a commitment to keeping Canada open for trade and investment. And we have followed through with concrete measures, including moving to eliminate tariffs for manufacturers, to lower the overall tax rate on new business to the lowest in the G-7 this year, and to provide support for research and development.

Together, these actions support our government’s number one priority: promoting jobs and growth.

The projects help contribute to this objective.

So, I am pleased to recognize two of this year’s Ontario recipients, who are here today.

The Greater Toronto Marketing Alliance is receiving $210,000 for initiatives that will seek out new global customers for businesses in Toronto.

And the Toronto Region Research Alliance is receiving $140,000 to help develop new Asian business connections in the biotechnology and life sciences sector, among other projects.

These groups understand the significant benefits of foreign investment.

They know that foreign investment has a positive impact on the Canadian economy—creating jobs and prosperity.

By supporting the efforts of communities in Ontario and across Canada, our government continues to get the message out about Canada’s key investment advantages in the highly competitive global market.

Thank you.