Premier Christy Clark today unveiled a multi-year #BCTECH Strategy that will support growth of B.C.’s vibrant technology sector – and strengthen British Columbia’s diverse knowledge-based economy.
The Premier unveiled the #BCTECH Strategy at the sold out #BCTECH Summit, which is bringing together more than 2,800 business leaders, tech companies, entrepreneurs, investors, academics and students.
“The #BCTECH Strategy is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan and contains a mix of new, enhanced and existing initiatives – all of which are aimed at creating an environment for further growth and investment in the tech industry,” said Premier Clark.
As a result of extensive consultation with the tech sector, the new #BCTECH Strategy focuses on three key areas: access to capital for promising companies, talent development and market access.
In addition to the recently announced $100-million BC Tech Fund, which will create an avenue for capital funding for promising start-up companies – the plan highlights K-12 curriculum which will provide the opportunity for more than 600,000 B.C. students to gain basic skills needed for careers in technology. Targeted programs include coding academies, greater access to work experience electives for high school students, and dual credit partnerships between secondary and post-secondary institutions.
“We all want a diverse, knowledge-based economy that supports innovation. That's why government is working with colleges, universities, institutes and the tech industry to adjust training and education to meet current and future demand for talent – as one-quarter of government funding for the post-education sector is earmarked for jobs in demand,” said Premier Clark.
The #BCTECH Strategy also includes activities that continue to streamline, simplify and automate government procurement processes, facilitate exports, invest in connectivity infrastructure, and improve collaboration and commercialization.
- The technology sector directly employs more than 86,000 people, and wages for those jobs are 60% higher than B.C.’s industrial average.
- B.C.’s technology sector is growing faster than the overall economy. In 2013, it grew at a rate of 4.7%, a higher rate than the 3.2% growth observed in the provincial economy.
- In 2013, the technology sector added $13.9 billion to B.C.’s GDP.
- B.C.’s 9,000 technology companies combined generated $23.3 billion in revenue in 2013.
- New technology companies are emerging at increasing rates throughout the province. In 2013, there was an addition of more than 700 new technology companies in B.C., an increase of 8% over the prior year.
#BCTECH Strategy: www.bctechstrategy.ca
For live web casts, photos/videos and more info on the #BCTECH Strategy, visit https://news.gov.bc.ca/stories/bctech-strategy
Premier’s Technology Council: www.gov.bc.ca/premier/technology_council
BC Technology Industry Association: www.bctia.org/
BC Innovation Council: www.bcic.ca
BC Business Council: http://www.bcbc.com/
Two backgrounders follow with participant quotes and highlights from the strategy.