Supporting innovation and technology development in Northern Ontario’s mining industry

News release

Government of Canada support helping companies develop, test, and showcase innovative technologies

July 19, 2019 – Sudbury, ON – Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario - FedNor

Innovative mining businesses and entrepreneurs in Northern Ontario will have a new space to share ideas, build partnerships, conduct research, and bring new technologies to market thanks to a Government of Canada investment of $1,395,000. This FedNor investment will enable NORCAT to build a state-of-the art surface facility at its Underground Centre where companies can innovate and enhance the productivity, safety and competitiveness of the mining industry.

The announcement was made today by Paul Lefebvre, Member of Parliament for Sudbury, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and Minister responsible for FedNor.

The new 12,000-square-foot facility will be used by innovative mining technology companies to develop, test and demonstrate innovative and emerging technologies in an operating mine environment. It will offer shared spaces, offices, meeting rooms, on-site personal protective equipment, first aid rooms, workshop, lunchroom, changing rooms, showers and personal storage amenities.


“Supporting Canadian innovation is a key priority of our government, which is why we made it a pillar of our Innovation and Skills Plan and Prosperity and Growth Strategy for Northern Ontario. This strategic investment in NORCAT will help shape the future of innovation and technology in the mining industry, and further strengthen Canada’s reputation as a global leader in mining.”

- Paul Lefebvre, Member of Parliament for Sudbury 

“With this investment in NORCAT, the Government of Canada is helping Northern Ontario businesses become more innovative, productive and competitive through the development, adoption and commercialization of new technologies. This new facility will provide a significant boost to local businesses by helping them test, fine-tune and showcase new technologies which they can, in turn, export to the rest of the world.”

- Marc Serré, Member of Parliament for Nickel Belt

 “A longstanding supporter and partner, the Government of Canada continues to recognize the value of NORCAT and the work we do to spur innovation, support skills training and help businesses develop and adopt new technologies and processes. As Northern Ontario's largest innovation centre, we are thrilled to add this new above-ground facility to our Underground Centre that will help cement our reputation as a global destination for mining research and innovation.”

- Don Duval, CEO, NORCAT

Quick facts

  • The funding announced today is provided through FedNor’s Regional Economic Growth through Innovation (REGI) program, which supports the growth of Canadian businesses, their expansion into new markets and their adoption of new technologies and processes.

  • Since 2016 and through successive budgets, the Government of Canada has earmarked an additional $62 million for FedNor in support of various initiatives to enable the organization to further strengthen Northern Ontario’s economy and create even more middle-class jobs for Canadians.

  • NORCAT is focused on developing and providing world-class programs, services, and resources to reduce injuries, save lives, and enhance productivity in the mining industry and beyond.  In addition, NORCAT is the only non-profit regional innovation centre in the world that has an operating mine designed to enable start-ups, small and medium-sized enterprises, and international companies to develop, test, and showcase new and innovative technologies in an operating mine environment.

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Paul Denis
Communications Officer

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