PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. - British Columbia will invest $7.8 million to advance the use of wood construction in the province, expanding its international markets to Asia.
In a Thursday afternoon announcement in Prince George, jobs, trade and technology minister Bruce Ralston said that expanding the province’s international markets out to Asia was key to the forest sector’s future.
“Expanding our international markets, especially in Asia, is crucial to the long-term success of B.C.’s forest sector,” said Ralston. “This funding support opens the door to more trade opportunities for B.C. companies, and will lead to greater innovation in the industry.”
The nearly $8 million will be split between 13 industry trade associations and research institutes. $5.9 million of the $7.8 will go toward expanding trade, especially in Asia and throughout North America, and the remaining $1.9 million will go toward the Wood First program, which exists to research innovative ways wood can be used in construction.
The Canadian government will also fund six projects in British Columbia to promote innovation and diversification in forestry and support collaboration with indigenous communities.
“Technology and innovation have placed our forest sector at the threshold of a new era," said Canada's minister of national resources Jim Carr. "Adopting new ways of using renewable forest materials will help ensure that Canada’s forest sector continues to play a key role in our economy and contributes to efforts to address climate change."