Prime Minister Trudeau and the Premier of Quebec announce investments in post-secondary institutions
Hello everyone. I’d like first of all to thank Premier Couillard and ministers Bains and David for all their work, and thanks also to Mr. Breton for hosting us today. I also want to acknowledge the presence of the MP for Outremont, the NDP leader, Tom Mulcair, and thank him for welcoming us here in his home riding. As the MP for Papineau, on the other side of the railroad tracks, I know that both the MP for Outremont and the MP for Papineau, who do not often agree on much, do agree completely that this is very good news for both our districts and for the city of Montreal, and obviously for Quebec and Canada.
Thank you for being here, Tom.
As you know, one of our government’s priorities is to make Canada a world leader in turning ideas into solutions, science into technologies, skills into jobs and start-up companies into global successes. In Budget 2016, we gave, so granted large sums to our universities and colleges through the Strategic Investment Fund, which has an envelope of $2 billion.
This initiative attests to our commitment to encouraging innovation across the country and to making Canada a global innovation hub. And above all, it attests to the confidence we have in Canadians, in their potential and know-how. Today, I am pleased to announce that the Government of Canada will allocate over $385 million to Quebec through the Strategic Investment Fund to support the completion of 101 projects.
And when we add the amounts granted by the Government of Quebec, the institutions themselves and the private sector, these projects represent investments totalling nearly $1.1 billion in Quebec research and innovation facilities.
Today I am pleased to announce that the government of Canada will invest more than $385 million in over 100 innovative Quebec projects through the Strategic Investment Fund. Coupled with the funding provided by the government of Quebec, investments from the institutions themselves and private sector capital, these projects represent total investments of close to $1.1 billion in Quebec research and innovation facilities.
The provincial and federal goverments understand very clearly that Quebecers want good, well-paid jobs for the middle class, that they want to be able to provide their families, children and grandchildren with a better future. And it is in that spirit that we have chosen to make targeted investments that will help citizens to succeed.
Here, at the Université de Montréal, the Government of Canada will put more than $98 million into 10 projets, thus making it one of the biggest investment programs in the history of the university.
The largest portion of that funding will be devoted to the construction of the science complex located on the site of the former Outremont rail yard. We will invest $84 million in that project, valued at $348 million, which will house scientific research and teaching activities as well as the engineering building of Polytechnique Montréal. It will be one of the largest innovation centres in the country, where researchers will work together in world-class facilties on finding solutions to the problems faced by our country and our world for generations to come.
I would also add that the science complex will be located between Parc Extension, Villeray and Outremont, thereby connecting major districts of Montreal. As MP for Papineau, I spent a lot of time talking with residents. Over the years, in the cafés on Jean-Talon and on the sidewalks of Rue Jarry, I listened to citizens sharing their concerns with me. Concerns shared by Canadians across the country whom I’ve had the pleasure to meet over the past few years.
I heard parents worrying about seeing their debt increase but not their salaries. I heard new Canadians who told me they were having difficulty joining the workforce and young people who were having trouble finding jobs.
Those concerns are well founded and they’re real. Concerns that form the basis of our plan to help Canada’s middle class and those working hard to join it.
These investments in our higher education institutions are part of a broader plan to create new opportunities for Canadians and grow our middle class. By building cutting-edge progressive facilities and attracting the brightest minds in our country, these investments will create conditions conducive to innovation and long-term growth. Students will be able to obtain the tools, training and knowledge they need to succeed in an increasingly competitive global economy. After all, our goal is to ensure that every Canadian has the skills necessary to build a more prosperous Canada and a more prosperous world for all.
We want Canadians to see opportunities, to imagine other possibilities and to find new ideas adapted to the realities of a world that is constantly changing. And the investments announced today represent a huge step towards achieving the objectives at the heart of our priorities.
Once again, I want to thank Mr. Breton for his leadership and to acknowledge the exceptional work and wonderful working partnership between Premier Couillard and ministers Bains and David.
I look forward to continuing our joint efforts to ensure a better future for all citizens.
Thank you very much, everyone.