Funding Opportunities and Highlights from the 2023 Federal Budget
Updated: Aug 9
With the release of the 2023 Federal Budget, a new pool of grant funding has been released to support the growth of key Canadian industries and sectors. Billed as a “Made-in-Canada Plan”, the new budget outlines the federal government key priorities in the year ahead and promises substantial new investments in sustainable efforts and green transformation as well as innovation and economic development.
Most funding opportunities will be opening in late summer, early fall and/or winter, as government departments adapt their processes to accept and evaluate applications, so it’s a good time to find out what opportunities might be available for your company in the months ahead. Here’s a summary of key areas for growth and major new investments:
Canada Digital Adoption Plan
One of the federal governments’ largest grant funding programs, the Canada Digital Adoption Plan (CDAP) has been renewed in FY2023 to continue helping organizations leverage digital technologies and adapt their businesses. Operated by Innovation, Science, and Economic Development Canada (ISED), CDAP will continue to offer their two core grant programs: the Grow Your Business Online grant, which provides up to $2,400 in funding to set up e-commerce, and the Boost Your Business Technology Grant, which offers up to $15,000 to secure industry advice on how to leverage digital technologies to meet your business needs.
Sustainable Development Technology Program
The Sustainable Development Technology Program (SDTP), run by Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC), offers grants to Canadian companies implementing innovative technological projects that will deliver significant environmental benefits. With the 2023 Federal Budget, this program will receive a 10% boost in funding, signaling this government’s commitment to growing Canada’s sustainability sector and fostering sustainable and environmental transformation.
SDTC defines sustainability benefits as environmental benefits that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions; recycling, regenerate and/or re-use resources; and promote the well-being of people and the environment through improvements to air quality, water conservation or pollution, soil protection, and land use, land conservation, or the elimination of land pollution.
On average, SDTC will fund around 33% of eligible project costs, with government stacking limited to 75%. Grants are available to small- and medium-sized companies (SMEs) at all stages of development, from seed to start-up to scale-up phases.
Global Innovation Clusters
Administered by ISED, the five Global Innovation Clusters are designed to foster innovation through public-private collaboration, including private businesses, academic, not-for-profits, and Indigenous organizations.
These clusters include:
· Digital Technology
· Protein Industries
· Advanced Manufacturing
· Scale AI
Each cluster manages its own application and intake process and offers different membership levels to partner organizations. Federal Budget 2022 committed an additional $750M until 2028 toward the Global Innovation Clusters, of which over $100M was allotted in 2023. Funding is intended to be used to foster cross-collaboration innovation and solve common challenges that lead to a better Canada.
Renewed Funding for Student Work Placement Program
To continue helping businesses hire talented youth and students, the Federal Budget 2023 has renewed its investment in the national Student Work Placement Program (SWPP). This program subsidizes wages for employers who hire students in work-integrated learning roles, supporting talent development, youth employment, and helping to alleviate hiring costs for employers.
The SWPP provides wage subsidies for employers across a diverse spectrum of industries. The program is administered by 18 different partner organizations, which foster talent development in specific sectors and roles.
Low- and No-Interest Loans
In addition to grant funding, Federal Budget 2023 has also included investments to foster Black and Women-led Entrepreneurship. These funding opportunities primarily take the form of low-interest loans available to entrepreneurs to boost access to start-up capital and encourage more Black- and women-led start-ups.
The Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund provides loans up to $250,000 to Black business owners and entrepreneurs across Canada. Administered by the Federation of African Canadian Economics (FACE), applicants can either apply for the Micro Loan Pilot Program ($10,000-$25,000) or the Macro Loan Program ($25,000-$250,000).
The Women Entrepreneurship Loan Fund provides loans of up to $50,000 to women-led business owners and entrepreneurs to start, scale-up, and access new markets. This program is delivered by 5 different organizations, while application processes and criteria differ depending on the administering body.
To find out more and see if your organization is eligible for any of these grants or more, contact Froese Law today!