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Canadian Advanced & Smart Manufacturing R&D Mission to South Korea – February-March 2021

Request for Expression of Interest

Global Affairs Canada through the Embassy of Canada in Seoul and the National Research Council Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP), would be pleased to receive your application to participate in the “Canadian Advanced & Smart Manufacturing R&D Mission to South Korea”, which will  take place virtually in late February or early March in 2021 in Seoul, South Korea.

Please note that interested companies must apply no later than January 13 2021.

Mission Objective

Manufacturing has been the backbone of South Korea’s economic growth. To address challenges associated with a fast-ageing population and increasing global competition, the country is striving to improve its productivity by developing and introducing advanced and smart manufacturing technologies. In addition, COVID-19 has fueled private and public support for smart manufacturing technologies that aim to help minimize direct human contact and interaction in the manufacturing and service sectors. With strong R&D expertise and capacity in these sectors, Canadian companies are well positioned to partner with leading Korean companies and R&D centers to increase their global competitiveness and access new markets. The mission will focus on introducing Canadian SMEs to potential Korean partners for industrial R&D collaboration.

Examples of R&D collaboration include, but are not limited to the following:

Collaborative R&D projects (validation, adaptation and co-development) between Canadian and Korean companies resulting from the Canadian Advanced & Smart Manufacturing R&D Mission to South Korea may be eligible for Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP) funding. Please click the CIIP link for further details.

Canadian Delegate Profile

Canadian participants should meet the requirements below in order to benefit from this initiative:

Mission Description

The Canadian Advanced & Smart Manufacturing R&D Mission will take place virtually over a 3-day period. Planned elements of the mission include:

Technology and products of particular interest for this mission include:

Advanced & Smart Manufacturing in South Korea

The manufacturing sector accounts for about 30% of Korea’s economy (compared to about 10% in Canada). South Korea spends a greater proportion of its GDP – 4% – on R&D than any other country.  Korea is also a world leader in ICT, and was the first country to launch commercial 5G services in December 2018.  However, the Korean industry needs to improve its efficiency and productivity to remain competitive, especially since it has one of the fastest-ageing populations in the world.

Building on Korea’s ICT and manufacturing expertise, the Korean government and local companies are investing heavily in R&D to make their factories “smarter”. Telecoms service providers like KT and SK Telecom are rolling out 5G solutions for industrial applications.  Industrial players like Hyundai and POSCO are increasing their levels of automation, networking, and use of artificial intelligence to optimize production and boost innovation.  ICT leaders like Samsung and LG have aggressively introduced smart technologies into their own production facilities and are selling it to others.

The COVID-19 pandemic is also expediting transformations in the manufacturing and service sectors in two main areas of activities: reshoring of overseas Korean-owned manufacturing facilities; and developing the “untact” economy (local term widely used in Korea to refer to contactless)”. The Korean government has allocated $1.1 billion in 2020 to encourage the deployment of smart factories, create smart industrial clusters, promote advanced manufacturing technology R&D and provide industry-specific training. Additionally, the Korean government will continue to allocate funding for smart factory development in order to reinforce the local manufacturing sector and encourage the re-shoring of Korean-owned overseas factories.  

The Korea Smart Manufacturing Office  and Smart Factory Innovation Center are playing pivotal roles in the government’s strategy.

Financial Support for Travel Costs (applicable to in-person mission only)

The Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP) may provide financial support to eligible Canadian SMEs participants for 50% of all eligible expenses such as:

Note: further information on the eligibility for travel funding will be provide to Canadian SMEs approved to participate in the mission.

How to Apply for Participation

Please note: Participation is limited. Applications submitted will be assessed and vetted to determine Applicant eligibility based on the quality of the information provided in regards to the technology and the appropriateness of the technology for the target CIIP market.

Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP)

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) in collaboration with the National Research Council Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) delivers the Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP) in South Korea. CIIP supports industrial R&D collaborations between Canadian SMEs and companies in key markets, including South Korea.

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