IPIC Submission on Helping Canadian Businesses Innovate, Commercialize, and Compete
4 August 2017
Standing Committee on Finance
In this submission, the Intellectual Property Institute of Canada (IPIC) proposes three complementary programs to help Canadian businesses innovate, commercialize, and leverage their intellectual property to compete and grow.
IPIC has therefore focused our submission on the following question posted by the Standing Committee on Finance (FINA) for this consultation:
2. What federal measures would help Canadian businesses to be more productive and competitive?
For example, what measures would help businesses to undertake research, innovation and commercialization, purchase advanced technology and equipment, invest in the training and development of their employees, participate in global value chains and increase their international market share?
Our first proposal addresses the need to foster a culture of innovation in Canada. The proposed “first patent” program would provide a subsidy that encourages new innovators to obtain their first patent when they innovate. New innovators are often hesitant to allocate resources to the protection of their intellectual property (IP). The program would result in a valuable asset useful in leveraging funds and attracting partners for commercial development.
Our second proposal is intended to address the comments by most stakeholder groups who addressed the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology in June of 2017, during their study on intellectual property and technology transfer. Canadian businesses and researchers need to improve on the crucial step of commercializing our innovations and intellectual property if we want our economy to grow. In our submission to Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada on a new National IP Strategy this July, IPIC recommended launching a ‘commercialization coupon’ to provide an incentive for business and researchers on the important step of planning for commercialization of their innovations and intellectual property.
Our third proposal is meant to help Canada become a global centre of innovation, help companies “scale up”, and retain R&D and manufacturing in Canada. The proposed “innovation box” tax incentive would encourage companies to develop and implement Canadian innovations, by allowing business income derived from intellectual property to be taxed at a lower rate than regular business income. This would also allow companies commercializing their intellectual property and innovations to compete and grow.
The three programs are complementary in that they are intended to support the commercial implementation and global competitiveness of Canadian innovations and intellectual property, while targeting both ends of the “innovation gap” in the Canadian economy. Together, these programs will support Canadian R&D, commercialization, and job growth.