Program Highlights 2012–2013

1. Introduction

Canada's aerospace, defence, space and security (aerospace and defence) industries are major contributors to our nation's economy and important global players. Canada's aerospace manufacturing sector is ranked 5th among OECD countries in terms of revenues and GDP, with $22.8 billion in direct revenue and more than 700 companies across the country.Footnote 1 This industry supported more than 170,000 direct, indirect and induced jobs in the Canadian economy in 2012, including approximately 73,000 direct jobs.Footnote 2 The defence industry is comprised of 700 firms, employed approximately 26,000 Canadians, and generated $9.4 billion in sales in 2011.Footnote 3

In the global marketplace, research and development (R&D) is a key driver of economic growth, and innovative companies are more likely than others to be part of that growth. R&D allows Canada to compete in new markets and industries, and helps Canadian businesses offer their customers new or improved products, processes and services. With annual investments of more than $1.7 billion each year, the aerospace sector is among Canada's largest contributors to Canadian R&D activities.Footnote 4

R&D benefits individual Canadians too, through economic development, employment opportunities, and the potential environmental and safety benefits of new or improved technologies (for example: better fuel efficiency, reduced emissions, and enhanced emergency communications capabilities).

A recent 2013 report by the Canadian Council of Academies, The State of Industrial R&D in Canada, identifies aerospace products and parts manufacturing as one of Canada's industrial R&D strengths.Footnote 5 Canadian companies must continue to invest aggressively in R&D to stay on the leading edge and be competitive.

The Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI) accelerates innovation by Canadian aerospace and defence companies to produce economic, technological and social benefits for Canadians. The program provides repayable contributions in support of strategic industrial and pre-competitive R&D. SADI was launched in 2007 and is delivered by the Industrial Technologies Office (ITO) of Industry Canada.

This report highlights developments in 2012–2013.

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