Ontario Hansard – 19-April2006
“Wind turbines: We are investing heavily in those, but again, those are an expensive form of electricity and they’re not reliable”
Liberals would set up billion-dollar fund to help manufacturing: Dion
HAMILTON, Ont. – A Liberal government would establish a $1-billion fund to help manufacturers move into green technologies, Stephane Dion pledged Friday.
The Liberal leader said his proposed Advanced Manufacturing Prosperity Fund would help pay for research and development projects aimed at boosting the hard-pressed manufacturing sector.
He told a Hamilton Chamber of Commerce meeting he has met business and union leaders, premiers and environmentalists over the last year to discuss the troubled manufacturing sector.
“They all bring different viewpoints to the table, but there is consensus on one thing: they all want to see Canada’s manufacturing sector become a world leader in green technologies,” he said. “The . . . fund is designed to help accomplish precisely that”.
Thousands of factory jobs have disappeared in recent years and Dion says it’s time to go beyond simple tax corporate breaks.
“Tax cuts alone are not enough,” he said. “The federal government must partner with the manufacturing sector as it adjusts to recent economic shocks. That requires strategic investment”.
In addition to the prosperity fund, the Liberals would provide tax credits to support private research which doesn’t translate into immediate profits.
“Innovation is essential to the survival of our industries, but it can be an expensive undertaking,” he said. “We want every company that puts money into R and D to be rewarded for innovating.
“By offering incentives for companies to continue investing in R and D, the Liberal party will encourage all companies to innovate, even if that innovation does not lead to immediate profitability.”
He said this will encourage more private funding for research and development and help Canadian companies become leaders in green technologies.
Dion took a swipe at Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Conservative government, saying it’s not willing to build a greener economy.
“If he plans to watch the manufacturing sector crumble instead of helping it to evolve, then he will not live up to anybody’s conception of good leadership.”