April 20, 2021
The Canadian government’s first budget in two years (A Recovery Plan for Jobs, Growth, and Resilience) has been released. The 2021 Budget includes key proposals for addressing the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic across many sectors.
Notably, the total footprint of intellectual property funding on the federal budget has been significantly increased. In particular, the 2021 Budget announced a number of intellectual property-related programs, including:
IP as a Reimbursable Expense:
- Canadian-controlled private corporations can expense up to $1.5 million of eligible investments made between now and 2024 on a broad range of digital assets and intellectual property
Supporting Use of IP in Small Business Financing:
- Amendments to the Canada Small Business Financing Act (CSBFA) are proposed to expand loan class eligibility to include lending against intellectual property and start-up assets and to increase the maximum loan amount from $350,000 to $500,000
Promoting Use of Canadian Intellectual Property Services:
- A new program called “ElevateIP” is proposed, along with a funding of $90 million over two years, to help accelerators and incubators provide start-ups with access to expert intellectual property services
The details for implementing the proposed programs, such as how to build a framework for delivering IP services and details of changes to the CSBFA and regulations, will take shape over the coming months.
The 2021 Budget is a clear acknowledgement by the federal government that intellectual property has a crucial role to play in supporting the innovation and entrepreneurial endeavors of Canadian businesses in growth and recovery post-pandemic.