Canadian Artificial Intelligence (AI) Mission to South Korea – November 2017

The Embassy of Canada in Seoul and the National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) are pleased to receive your “Expression of Interest” to participate in the upcoming Canadian AI Mission to South Korea, which will take place from November 15-17, 2017, in Seoul, South Korea.

Interested companies must apply no later than September 22, 2017.


Why AI and Machine Learning Opportunities in South Korea?

AI in South Korea is at an early stage, and according to experts is currently behind the US, Europe and Japanese industries by approximately 3 years.  This has created a sense of urgency among South Korean companies and creates unique opportunities for Canadian companies in the fields of AI and machine learning to partner with South Korean companies.  The South Korean government will be investing over CAD$100 million over the next 10 years in support of the development of advanced AI software.  The AI industry market size in South Korea is expected to grow from 3.6 trillion Korean won in 2013 to KRW 6.4 trillion (about CAD$7.1 billion) by 2017.

South Korean manufacturing industries account for 30% of the national GDP.  AI will be a critical element in reshaping Korea’s manufacturing industries and creating new service-oriented businesses. In Korea, healthcare, smart factories, and fintech are the sub-sectors with the greatest number of opportunities for AI and machine learning applications.  Such as: 

Mission Description

The Canadian AI Mission to South Korea program will be a 3-day program consisting of multiple B2B programs and visits to key AI-related organizations. The mission will focus on establishing industrial R&D collaboration opportunities (specifically technology validation, adaptation and co-development) in the fields of AI and machine learning specifically related to the healthcare, smart factories and fintech sectors.

The centerpiece of the program is a tailored B2B matchmaking schedule for Canadian participants, which will be held as part of the International R&D Collaboration Program during 2017 R&D Korea Tech Show (R&D Korea).  Last year, over 130 companies, university labs, and research centers participated in R&D Korea.  The main theme for R&D Korea 2017 is “4th Industrial Revolution and New Industries” and will include AI, drones, 3D printers, robots, and AR/VR as focus areas.

Other elements of the program may include site visit(s) to leading Korean companies and research centres and additional B2B meetings targeting Korean electronics giants, internet portal companies, Telcos, and Korean non-AI companies looking for AI and machine learning solutions. Canadian participants will also have presentation and networking opportunities.

**  Please note that large Korean companies, known as chaebols, are very selective in meeting with foreign companies and that they will personally select the members of the Canadian delegation with whom they will meet.  Final program will be developed based on the composition of the Canadian delegation.

More details on the program will be posted soon, please check this site for updates.

Canadian Delegate Profile

Canadian companies active in the AI and machine learning fields in the healthcare, smart factories or fintech sectors interested in participating in the mission should meet the requirements below in order to benefit from this initiative:

Applicants will be selected by the Canadian Embassy in South Korea based on the above criteria and best fit for the mission.

How to Apply for Participation

If you are interested in participating in the Canadian AI Mission, please send an email to Mr. Young Jin Kim at  and Ms. Lesley-Ann Reed at to request the application form.  Completed forms must be submitted no later than September 22, 2017. Late submissions will not be evaluated.

Financial Support for Participation

Shortlisted participants may be eligible for financial support to attend the Canadian AI Mission to South Korea. Confirmed participants will receive instructions on how to apply for funding from Global Affairs Canada.

Applicants may be eligible to receive support (up to 50% of all eligible costs may be reimbursed to a maximum of $15,000 per company) for their participation for costs, such as:

Canadian International Innovation Program (CIIP)

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) partners with the the National Research Council Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) to deliver 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. Collaborative R&D projects (validation, adaptation and co-development) between Canadian and South Korean companies resulting from the Canadian AI Mission to South Korea may be eligible to apply for CIIP project funding.

See more information on CIIP.

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