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Frequently Asked Questions – Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP)

The Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP) is a funding program offered to Canadian small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by the Trade Commissioner Service (TCS), and delivered in collaboration with the National Research Council of Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP).

Canadian SMEs can apply for up to $600,000 in CIIP funding to pursue collaborative research & development (R&D) projects that have the potential for commercialization in the following markets: Brazil, China, Israel, India and South Korea.

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Potential applicants

Under CIIP, what qualifies as a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME)?

CIIP defines a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) as an incorporated, for-profit company with 500 or fewer full-time equivalent employees.

What is the relationship between Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the National Research Council of Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP)?

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistant Program (NRC IRAP) work together in the delivery of the program. GAC is responsible for the delivery of the Partnership Development Activities (PDAs) while NRC IRAP manages all the Call for Proposals and funding collaborative research and development (R&D) projects.

Do applicants need to be a client of the Trade Commissioner Service (TCS) part of Global Affairs Canada (GAC)) and/or the National Research Council of Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) prior to applying?

No, it is not necessary to have a relationship with or be a client of either the Trade Commissioner Service (TCS) or NRC IRAP. However, companies applying for R&D project funding will eventually have to register with NRC IRAP, which is an additional process, therefore it is recommended that the applicants contact NRC IRAP prior to applying. For more information on CIIP eligibility and becoming an NRC IRAP client, please contact NRC IRAP at 1-877-994-4727

What is a contribution?

A contribution is a form of funding offered by the program for specific activities and expenditures related to an approved project. Contributions are subject to performance conditions that are specified in a Contribution Agreement (CA). The recipient must show that their project continues to meet the performance conditions over the life of the agreement in order to be reimbursed for specific costs.

Is there an annual minimum revenue requirement?

No. However, companies that receive funding must be able to finance their share of the R&D project, either with direct revenue and/or capital.

If I have a disability that limits my ease of travel, does CIIP provide funding for additional travel expenses incurred as a result of participating in a Partnership Development Activity (PDA)?

Yes, however we recommend contacting your program officer to discuss the logistics of your needs.

Partnership Development Activities (PDA)

How do I apply to a Partnership Development Activity (PDA)?

You can apply to a  Partnership Development Activity (PDA) when there are PDAs listed under Open Activities. Choose an open PDA to be directed to the PDA Request for Expression of Interest (EOI) page, for a more detailed breakdown of the activity, including the application process for Canadian SMEs. In order to apply for a PDA, companies must contact the trade commissioner responsible for administering the mission. This information is provided at the bottom of each country specific Request for Expression of Interest (EOI) page.

It is recommended that potential applicants register for automatic updates on the CIIP website under the Subscribe to Updates portal to be automatically notified when there is a new PDA open.

If my company has not yet developed connections in the target market of a Partnership Development Activity (PDA), can I still apply?

Yes, you can still apply as it is not necessary to have any previous connections to a specified PDA market.

Do I have to identify a foreign partner before applying to a Partnership Development Activity (PDA)?

No. It is not necessary for an applicant to identify a foreign partner before applying to a PDA. The goal of PDAs is to introduce Canadian SMEs to new international markets and potential partners.

What markets are eligible under CIIP funding?

There are 5 markets eligible under CIIP:

  1. Brazil
  2. China
  3. India
  4. Israel
  5. South Korea

If there is a market you would like to apply to that is noteligible under CIIP, we recommend checking out EUREKA as a possible alternative.

Collaborative Research and Development (R&D) Projects

What is a collaborative Research & Development (R&D) project?

CIIP helps fund collaborative R&D Projects between a Canadian SME and their foreign partner, with the aim to co-develop, adapt, and/or validate a technology that is close to commercialization (3 -5 years after project completion). The time frame for commercialisation will vary depending on the country and sector. In order to be eligible for funding, the project needs to fall between 6 and 9 on the Technology Readiness Level.

Under CIIP, what degree of partnership/working relationship do the project partners have to have prior to applying for funding?

Project partners must have a signed Partnership Agreement prior to applying. Within this partnership agreement, the roles and responsibilities of each partner, a solidified IP framework and a budget breakdown must be clearly stated.

What markets are eligible under CIIP’s Research & Development (R&D) Projects?

There are 5 markets eligible under CIIP’s R&D projects:

  1. Brazil
  2. China
  3. India
  4. Israel
  5. South Korea
If my technology is no longer in the Research & Development (R&D) phase and has moved to the commercialization stage, can I still apply?

Yes. If your technology has been commercialized in one market, then you are still eligible to apply for funding to commercialize your technology in another CIIP market or co-develop a new technology from an existing commercialized technology.

How does my company apply for funding for our collaborative Research & Development (R&D) project?

Calls for Proposals (CFPs) for each country are launched once a year and are posted to the CIIP website. It is recommended that interested companies Subscribe to Updates to be automatically notified when a CFP is launched.

Funding for each CFP is done on a competitive basis, meaning that although a project may be eligible, the program can only fund a certain number of projects per CFP.

There are four phases to the application process:

Does my foreign partner have to be a small to medium-sized enterprises (SME)?

Not necessarily. This is based on the national funding body’s criteria. Some countries only fund SMEs while others do not. Check the eligibility requirements on the national funding body`s website.

Where can my foreign partner find funding?

Your foreign partner can find their respective funding through NRC IRAP, who will provide the link for your foreign partner’s funding opportunity on their Call for Proposal (CFP) webpage.

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