Québec, Quebec, July 16, 2020 – Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (CED)
The manufacturing industry is a significant contributor to Quebec’s economic growth, in addition to providing many jobs. The negative impacts of COVID-19 are being felt across many sectors in the economy, and the manufacturing sector has not been spared. Innovation and the integration of new technologies are proving to be key assets to enable SMEs in this industry to remain competitive and to enhance their productivity. By automating their processes, they are transforming how they operate, placing themselves in a better position to face the current situation related to the health crisis.
These SMEs need support, as the investments in monetary, material and human resources needed to make this shift are often considerable, and some fear it would imperil their financial health.
Innovation and automation serving business
The Government of Canada firmly believes that the vitality of an economy is founded on innovation, the creation of value-added products and the development of efficient processes. That is why, for many years now, it has been supporting innovation within businesses and encouraging the acquisition of digital skills.
Today, the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, accompanied by the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Member of Parliament for Québec and President of the Treasury Board, took the opportunity during a visit to Valmec to announce financial assistance totalling close to $21 million for 45 projects that have emerged across Quebec.
These contributions have enabled businesses to acquire and install new digital production equipment and integrate new tools with a view to modernizing their operations.
The growth of the manufacturing sector is essential for the Quebec economy, and competitiveness is the main issue facing manufacturers, who are confronted with a series of challenges such as productivity delays, labour shortages and funding. Moreover, with current physical distancing measures, the number of workers per square foot has had to be reduced in recent months. Establishing smart factories by investing in technology, automation and robotization is proving to be a key solution, particularly to enhance productivity and reduce human intervention and operating costs, as well as to facilitate the development of new markets.