Alberta connects to China through entrepreneurial partnerships

Jun 8, 2017

The Alberta-Zhejiang Global Partnership Program hosted a tour, a networking session and presentations for companies and government delegates from Alberta and Zhejiang, China in Edmonton on May 17.

The event was held to explore potential cross-connections in the areas of bio-sensing, robotics, energy storage, pharma and mobile/big data.

“Our visitors gained a deeper understanding of the similarities between our provinces,” says Sandra Candie, Director, Global Partnerships, Alberta Innovates. “It’s amazing how universities and entrepreneurs, no matter where they are in the world, struggle with the same issues related to technology development and access to national and international markets. When these companies come together through Alberta Innovates, they’re given the support they need to take their businesses to the next level.”

The goal of Alberta Innovates’ Global Partnerships initiatives is to assist small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in exploring international opportunities for commercializing technologies and gaining access to new markets. Programs are designed to foster global, multilateral collaboration and trade, an important focus for the Government of Alberta. Programs like this de-risk innovative technology development opportunities for all parties.
Since 2016, Alberta Innovates has invested over $4 million in Alberta SMEs through the Alberta-Zhejiang Global Partnership Program, with the People’s Republic of China’s Science and Technology Department providing matching contributions to Zhejiang companies.

Zhejiang is a predominately agricultural province in southeast China, bordering Shanghai. Like Alberta, the Zhejiang provincial government is actively pursuing economic diversification in the tech sector. Zhejiang has a population of 56 million, more than one-and-a-half times the size of Canada.

An upcoming call for Expressions of Interest for the Alberta-Zhejiang Global Partnership Program is expected to be announced soon.