Government grants, loans, tax credits and support services for Ontario businesses

We make it easy to grow your business in Ontario, Canada. We offer an array of government incentive programs and services that can lower your corporate taxes and help your business save on labour costs, R&D, and expansion activities.

Below is a sample of the available incentive programs and services.

General funding and incentives for growing Ontario businesses

Funding for creation of leading-edge technologies, processes, and products

The Jobs and Prosperity Fund provides grant and loan funding for projects in advanced industries (e.g. information technology, life sciences, advanced manufacturing) and food industries (e.g. food, beverage, and bioproduct processing).

Financing, government grants and support for exporters

Foreign Buyer Financing from Export Development Canada (EDC) provides financing to international customers, so that the agency takes on the risk of non-payment. Your customer receives extended payment terms and you receive payment according to your contract’s terms and conditions, so your business reaps the benefits of a cash sale.

Export Market Access (EMA) and CanExport offer combined funding of up to $130,000 to cover as much as 50% of eligible expenses, including activities such as business travel to target markets, participation at trade fairs and trade missions, registration fees and booth expenses.

Government grants to cover the cost of hiring and training

Government grants for hiring and training abound for businesses operating in Ontario, with both federal and provincial programs offering as much as $20,000 or more to companies that hire and/or train workers. Here are just a few opportunities your business can cash in on when you hire in Ontario:

  • Access Mitacs funding programs to benefit from research collaborations with skilled graduate and post-graduate students; funding begins at $15,000.
  • The Ontario Exporters Fund provides small and medium-sized businesses with up to $80,000 (up to 50% of salary) in the form of a non-repayable grant to hire a dedicated Export Manager.
  • The Canada-Ontario Job Grant provides funding to individuals identified by employers in need of skill improvement. The grant covers up to two-thirds of eligible training costs, up to a maximum of $10,000 per individual.

Additional programs include, but are not limited to, the Career Focus wage subsidy program, Canada Summer Jobs and the Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) Youth Employment Program.

Region-specific funding for businesses in Ontario

Depending on which region of Ontario you are based in, your business may be eligible for a region-specific funding to support business expansion.

Funding for businesses in Southwestern Ontario

Southwestern Ontario Development Fund (SWODF) provides grant and loan funding for economic development in southwestern Ontario. The funds support projects that create jobs, encourage innovation, collaboration and cluster development, and attract private sector investment.

Funding for businesses in Eastern Ontario

Eastern Ontario Development Fund (EODF) provides grant and loan funding for economic development in eastern Ontario. The funds support projects that create jobs, encourage innovation, collaboration and cluster development, and attract private sector investment.

Funding for businesses in rural and Northern Ontario

Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation programs (NOHFC) offers the opportunity to invest in northern businesses and municipalities through conditional contributions, forgivable performance loans, incentive term loans and loan guarantees.

The Rural Economic Development Fund (RED) supports businesses located in communities with less than 100,000 people. Funding supports regional economic development activities through grant funding of up to 20%, covering eligible expenses of up to $1 million to promote innovation and collaboration, while strengthening the supply chain in rural Ontario.

Grants and incentives for innovation and R&D

Ontario-based businesses can benefit from a number of government grant and tax incentive programs that drastically reduce the cost of performing research and development activities. Opportunities include:

Sector-specific grants, loans and support programs for Ontario businesses

Grants, loans and tax incentives also apply to businesses operating in particular, high priority sectors including automotive and auto-parts manufacturing, aerospace and defence, agri-food and food processing, clean technology and life sciences.

Funding for automotive and auto-parts manufacturing

Federal and provincial government funding programs support Ontario's role as one of the world's most progressive locations to perform automotive R&D. Automotive and auto-parts manufacturers can benefit from programs that include:

  • The Automotive Innovation Fund (AIF) supports strategic, large-scale R&D projects aimed at building innovative, greener, and more fuel-efficient vehicles. Projects must be valued at more than $75 million over five years to be eligible.
  • The Automotive Supplier Innovation Program (ASIP) helps automotive suppliers through the support of product development and technology demonstration.

Funding for Aerospace and Defence

In addition to being eligible for many of the general funding and support programs available for research and development and business expansion, those in the aerospace and defence sector are eligible for sector-specific programs, such as:

  • The Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) R&D Challenge offers funding and support for collaboration between businesses and post-secondary institutions and/or research centres and industry associations or consortia, to overcome research and development challenges.
  • The Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI) provides repayable contributions to support research and development projects in the aerospace, space, defence and security (A&D) sectors. SADI is available to firms of all sizes to support product, service or process innovation.

Funding for food processing companies

The provincial and federal governments provide more than $3 billion in funding and support to Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector through a variety of grant and loan programs offered through Growing Forward 2 (GF2). In addition to free workshops and resources, GF2 funds activities that encourage innovation, competitiveness and market development.

Funding for Ontario's interactive digital media sector

The Ontario Media Development Corporation offers a range of tax credits and funding programs applicable to businesses in book and magazine publishing, film and video, interactive media, and music.

Funding for clean technology and energy conservation

Provincial and federal funding programs support the development of clean technology and the implementation of energy conservation initiatives. Programs include:

Funding for Ontario's life sciences sector

In addition to an ecosystem made up of industry-leading research centres and hospitals, Ontario's life sciences sector benefits from a variety of lucrative funding and support programs:

Government grants, loans and support for start-ups

Start-ups in Ontario can access funding and support services from the province and the federal government. Some of the opportunities include:


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