According to a report released by the Science, Technology and Innovation Council Tuesday, Canada’s innovation performance has slumped on most key measures in the two years since its last report card. Continued lack of funding per capita and direct investments compared to other competing countries were seen as the main issues. The conclusions reinforce the flood of other studies which all demonstrate Canada has the talent and resources, but more direct funding for innovation is required rather than tax credits.
Ontario has taken a key step to reversing trend. On June 22, Ontario Premier, Dalton McGuinty joined Mark Lievonen, President of Sanofi Pasteur Canada, a global and diversified healthcare leader to open a $101 million dollar vaccine research and development facility at Sanofi Pasteur’s Connaught Campus in north Toronto. It solidifies the Toronto site as a national strategic asset for the research, development and manufacturing of vaccines that protect public health – in Canada and around the world.
The province of Ontario contributed $13.9 million to the project through the Biopharmaceutical Investment Program, part of the Next Generation of Jobs Fund. This investment helped retain a large vaccine R&D footprint in Ontario and will help secure future manufacturing jobs, since it is easier to reach commercial manufacturing scale for new products when R&D facilities are in close proximity to the actual manufacturing site.
“Sanofi Pasteur is a valued partner in our commitment to health care in Ontario,” said Premier Dalton McGuinty. “This impressive new building houses some of the most exciting talent anywhere, doing some of the most vital research in the world. We congratulate Sanofi Pasteur and look forward to new breakthroughs and new jobs.”
For more information on Sanofi Pasteur and the Connaught Campus, please visit http://www.sanofipasteur.ca/sanofi-pasteur2/front/index.jsp?siteCode=SP_CA
Thomas Liu is an undergrad student at the University of Toronto, Mississauga. He is currently enrolled in the Commerce program pursuing a specialist in Accounting and Finance. Thomas is a summer intern with the RIC Centre acting as Research Associate / Market Analyst.