For the first time in more than three decades, the Government of Canada will enhance its federal economic development presence and services in Western Canada by creating two new regional development agencies for the prairie provinces and British Columbia.
This approach recognizes that economic drivers and conditions are different in each of the two regions and entrepreneurs, innovators, institutions, and communities have unique needs linked to where they are located.
Prairies Economic Development Canada (PrairiesCan) will be the new regional economic development agency for businesses and communities in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
It will build on Western Economic Diversification Canada’s (WD) 34-year legacy by playing stronger roles as convenors, pathfinders, advisors, investors and collaborators to achieve better economic outcomes for regional economies across the Prairies.
PrairiesCan will benefit from WD’s existing core program funding which means an overall increase in resources available for strategic investments and community economic development on the Prairies.
As a result, in addition to maintaining current headquarters in Edmonton, and offices in Saskatoon, Winnipeg and Ottawa and expanding its Calgary satellite office, PrairiesCan will significantly extend its reach by establishing new service locations in the following communities Lethbridge, Fort McMurray and Grande Prairie in Alta.; Regina and Prince Albert in Sask. and Brandon and Thompson in Man.
These locations will be launched over a period of months. When complete, this enhanced on-the-ground presence will bring the federal government closer to businesses and the communities they call home.
The new agency will also maintain existing relationships with clients and partners such as the Western Canada Business Service Network, and will continue to deliver new Budget 2021 funding programs, as well as existing initiatives that help businesses scale-up, and support regional innovation.