Over the last two years, the federal government has introduced many new incentives for research and development, mainly by way of grants or non-repayable contributions. In addition, certain existing government programs have been awarded additional funds and it is proposed that some programs be amalgamated to simplify what was perceived as a plethora of government grant programs that were difficult to navigate.

So, what is being planned?

A large step toward streamlining the suite of programs is the establishment of four flagship platforms, and the consolidation of a number of current existing programs beneath them. The platforms are:

1. Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP)

This program has been around for many years. It helps small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) carry out R&D projects with a view toward increasing their capacity to commercialize their innovations.

Recent changes mean IRAP will now be able to support R&D projects up to a new funding threshold: $10M, where previously only up to $500K would be funded. The government will also invest $700 million in the program over five years starting in 2018-2019. Businesses that make Scientific Research & Experimental Development (SR&ED) tax credit claims should consider applying for IRAP before undertaking a new R&D initiative….

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