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2009-10
Departmental Performance Report



Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency






Supplementary Information (Tables)






Table of Contents




Sources of Non-Respendable Revenue

 

($ millions)

2007-2008
Actual

2008-2009
Actual

2009-2010

Main
Estimates

Planned
Revenue

Total
Authorities

Actual

Program Activity: Enterprise Development>
Repayable Contributions

56.2

54.0

52.0

52.0

47.4

47.4

All Other

5.3

10.5

2.0

2.0

13.3

13.3

Total

61.5

64.5

54.0

54.0

60.7

60.7



Details of Transfer Payment Programs (TPPs)


Transfer Payment Program:

Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) – Voted

Start date:

May 10, 2001

End date:

Renewed on an ongoing basis as of March 2010.

Description of Transfer Payment Program:

The AIF focuses on increasing research and development linked to economic development and commercialization objectives in areas that are of strategic importance to the region, in particular, the growth of strategic sectors/clusters. The AIF emphasizes building Atlantic Canada’s system of innovation, including components that bridge the gap between research institutions and the marketplace. It encourages synergies among the various components of this system through partnerships, alliances and networks. Furthermore, the AIF supports research and development projects that focus on the areas of natural sciences, applied sciences, and social sciences and humanities, where these are linked explicitly to the development of technology-based products, processes or services, or their commercialization, thereby strengthening the region’s system of innovation. More information on the AIF can be found on the ACOA website.  

Strategic Outcome:

A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy

Results Achieved:

ACOA focuses on accelerating the development of the knowledge-based economy and on facilitating transition within traditional industries. The Agency uses the AIF to increase the region’s capacity to carry out leading-edge research and development, and to contribute to the development of new technology-based economic activity in Atlantic Canada. In 2009-2010 there were 30 projects approved under the AIF, accounting for over $62.4 million in ACOA assistance toward projects valued at $110.9 million.
The AIF facilitates the development of strategic sectors characterized by regional clusters of firms. In 2009-2010, 27 of 30 approved projects, accounting for just under $57 million in AIF funding, augmented development of the Information Technology, life sciences/biotech, and oil and gas/oceans technology clusters, and complement the National Research Council’s Atlantic cluster initiative.

ACOA encourages prospective stakeholders, including universities, colleges, research organizations and private sector firms, to take an active role in seeking out opportunities for partnerships/collaboration. In 2009-2010 there were 70 meaningful partnerships stemming from AIF-funded projects.
Furthermore, ACOA continued to support Springboard Atlantic Inc., a network of 14 universities and four provincial community colleges with the mandate of providing support for the transfer of knowledge and technology to the private sector. This network has been instrumental in facilitating commercialization of research that has been completed in Atlantic Canada, as well as the development of public-private partnerships nationally, internationally and regionally.

The January 2010 impact evaluation of ACOA’s innovation program sub-activity found that ACOA’s support for innovation is contributing to enhanced commercialization capacity and productivity levels in Atlantic Canada. Funded projects are resulting in the acquisition and installation of leading-edge technology, improved production strategies, new products, certifications, and access to new markets. An increase in commercialization activity has been identified through patent awards, spinoff firm creation, and the commercialization of many products, services, technologies, and processes. These results are having a significant impact on revenue generation. For example, the 22 organizations represented in the case studies indicated that commercialization activities resulting from AIF funding have contributed to additional sales of approximately $248 million.

  ($ millions)
2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010
Actual
Spending
Actual
Spending
Planned
Spending
Total
Authorities
Actual
Spending
Variance
Program Activity: Enterprise Development
Total Contributions 57.0 58.1 69.8 69.8 57.6 12.2
Total for Program Activity 57.0 58.1 69.8 69.8 57.6 12.2

Comment on Variance:

Spending on projects did not flow as anticipated.

Audit completed or planned:

  • In Progress
    • Audit of the disbursement process for program payments; estimated completion August 2010.
    • Audit of post-payment verification of program payments; estimated completion October 2010.
  • Planned (for 2010-2011)
    • Audit of advances of grants and contributions; estimated completion December 2010.
    • Audit of eligibility/due diligence of AIF projects; estimated completion March 2011.

Evaluation completed or planned:

As of fiscal year 2009-2010, evaluations are being completed at the program sub-activity level and incorporate the transfer payments programs.
An evaluation of the AIF was completed in January 2010 as part of the innovation program sub-activity evaluation.


Transfer Payment Program:

Business Development Program (BDP) – Voted and Statutory

Start date:

June 25, 1995

End date:

March 31, 2011

Description of Transfer Payment Program:

Through its Business Development Program (BDP), ACOA works to create opportunities for economic growth in Atlantic Canada by helping small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) become more competitive, innovative and productive by working with communities to develop and diversify local economies, and by championing the strengths of the region in partnership with Atlantic Canadians.

Strategic Outcome:

A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy

Results Achieved:

During 2009-2010, to improve productivity and preserve long-term prospects of employment, the BDP has invested in projects to establish new businesses and in projects to help companies to expand and/or modernize their facilities. This program continues to focus on innovation, skills development and trade activities to enhance the business environment in Atlantic Canada. The program serves to fill gaps in the financing continuum for SMEs and entrepreneurs in Atlantic Canada.
The BDP also invested more than $57 million in community development projects in 2009-2010. These projects improved community capacity to identify economic development needs and opportunities, ensured that Atlantic Canadian businesses have access to capital as well as business information and counselling, and improved community capacity to address economic and business development needs and opportunities.


  ($ millions)
2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010
Actual
Spending
Actual
Spending
Planned
Spending
Total
Authorities
Actual
Spending
Variance
Program Activity: Enterprise Development
Total Grants 0.2 0.2 1.0 1.0 0.1 0.9
Total Contributions 97.3 99.9 90.1 96.8 105.7 (15.6)
Total for Program Activity 97.5 100.1 91.1 97.8 105.8 (14.7)
Program Activity: Community Development
Total Grants 0.3 0.5 1.0 1.0 0.3 0.7
Total Contributions 21.4 23.3 20.5 20.5 42.3 (21.8)
Total for Program Activity 21.7 23.8 21.5 21.5 42.5 (21.1)
Program Activity: Policy, Advocacy and Coordination
Total Contributions 0.5 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.7 (0.2)
Total for Program Activity 0.5 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.7 (0.2)
 
Total for Transfer Payment Program 119.7 124.5 113.1 119.8 149.0 (35.9)

Comment on Variance:

An additional $35.9 million was made available for the BDP during the year, mostly as a result of initiatives under Canada’s Economic Action Plan and Canada’s linguistic duality, as well as reduced requirements under the Atlantic Innovation Fund. The additional financial resources for the BDP were used to accelerate payments for SME projects, easing cash flow challenges during the current economic downturn, and to fund increased demands on Community Development.

Audit completed or planned:

  • Completed or In Progress
    • Audit of venture capital; completed February 2010
    • Audit of the disbursement process for program payments; estimated completion August 2010.
    • Follow-up on the 2006-2007 audit of the Business Development Program; estimated completion October 2010.
    • Audit of post-payment verification of program payments; estimated completion October 2010.
    • Audit of eligibility/due diligence of BDP commercial projects; estimated completion October 2010.
    • Office of the Auditor General audit of Canada’s Economic Action Plan (which includes a portion of the BDP) is in progress at the national level; report to be tabled October 2010.
  • Planned (for 2010-2011)
    • Audit of advances of grants and contributions; estimated completion December 2010.
      Internal audit of Canada’s Economic Action Plan (to include a portion of the BDP); estimated completion March 2011.

Evaluation completed or planned:

As of fiscal year 2009-2010, evaluations are being completed at the program sub-activity level and incorporate the transfer payments programs.

Evaluations completed or in progress related to the Business Development Program include:

  • Community investment, community development resources, official language minority communities and aboriginal communities (completed December 2009)
  • Innovation (completed January 2010)
  • Financing continuum (estimated completion date July 2010)
  • Trade and investment (estimated completion date July 2010)
  • Entrepreneurship and business skills development (estimated completion date July 2010)

Transfer Payment Program:

Community Futures (CF) – Voted

Start date:

May 18, 1995

End date:

October 2, 2010

Description of Transfer Payment Program:

The Community Futures (CF) program supports community economic development and builds the capacity of communities to realize their full sustainable potential. The program provides financial support to CF organizations (e.g. Community Business Development Corporations in Atlantic Canada) enabling them, in collaboration with other partners and stakeholders, to assess their situation and develop strategies to meet their needs. The CF program also provides support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and social enterprises for undertaking appropriate community economic development initiatives.

Strategic Outcome:

A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy

Results Achieved:

In 2009-2010, the 41 Community Business Development Corporations approved 1,100 loans that represent an investment of over $51.0 million in rural communities. The CBDCs also provided 8,514 counselling sessions to clients throughout the Atlantic region.

  ($ millions)
2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010
Actual
Spending
Actual
Spending
Planned
Spending
Total
Authorities
Actual
Spending
Variance
Program Activity: Community Development
Total Contributions 13.7 12.4 13.1 13.1 13.0 0.1
Total for Program Activity 13.7 12.4 13.1 13.1 13.0 0.1

Comment on Variance:

The variance is due to normal program administration, wherein some projects costs were incurred later than expected because of unforeseen circumstances in the projects.

Audit completed or planned:

  • Completed or In Progress
    • Audit of Community Futures; completed December 2009.
    • Audit of the disbursement process for program payments; estimated completion August 2010.
    • Audit of post-payment verification of program payments; estimated completion October 2010.
  • Planned (for 2010-2011)
    • Audit of advances of grants and contributions; estimated completion December 2010.

Evaluation completed or planned:

As of fiscal year 2009-2010, evaluations are being completed at the program sub-activity level and incorporate the transfer payments programs.
An evaluation of ACOA’s Community Futures program was completed in June 2009.



Transfer Payment Program:

Innovative Communities Fund (ICF) – Voted

Start date:

April 1, 2005

End date:

Renewed on an ongoing basis on March 2010.

Description of Transfer Payment Program:

The program is designed to make non-repayable contributions to support strategic initiatives that respond to the economic development needs of communities. To effectively address the wide range of challenges and opportunities of regions, communities and sectors, the ICF takes a comprehensive approach to working with communities at various stages along the economic development continuum, while ensuring sustainable economic outcomes.

The ICF has three distinct components. The first component, strategic community capacity, is designed to support non-commercial/non-profit strategic initiatives that target the economic development needs of rural communities. The second, proactive investments, is intended to stimulate transformative change. This component will support proactive identification and implementation of strategic opportunities with local partners. The third component, the Community Adjustment Fund (CAF) is a two-year funding initiative, ending March 31, 2011, put in place by the Government of Canada to provide economic stimulus to mitigate the short-term impacts of the economic downturn by creating employment opportunities and to address transitional and adjustment challenges in restructuring communities. In Atlantic Canada, ACOA is delivering CAF using its existing Innovative Communities Fund (ICF) and Business Development Program (BDP).

The program is designed to respond to the unique and varying needs of communities. The flexible approach will encourage clear links to sustainable economic development outcomes. A focus on outcomes will ensure that the program has the desired impact on Atlantic Canada’s economy.

Strategic Outcome:

A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy

Results Achieved:

During fiscal year 2009-2010, 221 projects were approved under the ICF, of which 74 were funded under the strategic community capacity component and two were under the proactive investment component. These 76 projects had a total project cost of $104.84 million with an ACOA contribution of $17.3 million and dollars leveraged amounting to $87.54 million. In addition to these 76 projects approved under ICF, an additional 146 ICF projects were approved under the Community Adjustment Fund (CAF). These 146 ICF-CAF projects had a total project cost of $ 144.86 million with an ACOA contribution of $65.4 million and dollars leveraged amounting to $79.53 million.

  ($ millions)
2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010
Actual
Spending
Actual
Spending
Planned
Spending
Total
Authorities
Actual
Spending
Variance
Program Activity: Community Development
Total Contributions 46.9 48.9 43.6 88.0 73.4 (29.8)
Total for Program Activity 46.9 48.9 43.6 88.0 73.4 (29.8)

Comment on Variance:

The actual spending is higher than anticipated mostly due to a Canada’s Economic Action Plan (CEAP) initiative, the CAF being delivered through ICF.

Audit completed or planned:

  • Completed or In Progress
    • Follow-up on the 2006-2007 audit of Community Development; completed June 2010
    • Audit of the disbursement process for program payments; estimated completion August 2010.
    • Audit of post-payment verification of program payments; estimated completion October 2010.
    • Office of the Auditor General audit of CEAP (which includes CAF) is in progress at the national level; report to be tabled October 2010.
  • Planned (for 2010-2011)
    • Audit of advances of grants and contributions; estimated completion December 2010.
    • Internal audit of CEAP (to include CAF); estimated completion March 2011.

Evaluation completed or planned:

As of fiscal year 2009-2010, evaluations are being completed at the program sub-activity level and incorporate the transfer payments programs.
An evaluation of the ICF was completed in December 2009 as part of the community investment, community development resources, official language minority communities and aboriginal communities evaluation.



Transfer Payment Program:

Recreational Infrastructure Canada (RInC) – Voted

Start date:

April 1, 2009

End date:

March 31, 2011

Description of Transfer Payment Program:

The RInC program provides $500 million nationally for projects to assist in the rehabilitation of recreational facilities across Canada, which must be completed by March 31, 2011.

Through RInC, the Government of Canada has committed, over two years, to support upgrades and repairs of existing recreational assets, including new construction that adds to or replaces existing recreational infrastructure assets or capacity.
The program is designed to provide a timely, targeted stimulus to the economy, and to help mitigate the impacts of the current global economic recession by increasing the total volume of construction activity related to recreational infrastructure. Through the rehabilitation of recreational infrastructure, this program also encourages participation in physical activity and community building.

Strategic Outcome:

A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy

Results Achieved:

As of March 31, 2010, ACOA had fully committed its RInC allocation by investing $34.1 million in projects across Atlantic Canada. During fiscal year 2009-2010, 230 projects were approved under RInC with total project costs of $125.7 million and dollars leveraged amounting to $91.6 million. Among the approved projects, 193 have been announced and 39 have been successfully completed.

  ($ millions)
2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010
Actual
Spending
Actual
Spending
Planned
Spending
Total
Authorities
Actual
Spending
Variance
Program Activity: Community Development
Total Contributions 0.0 0.0 0.0 9.9 11.3 (11.3)
Total for Program Activity 0.0 0.0 0.0 9.9 11.3 (11.3)

Comment on Variance:

RInC is a CEAP initiative introduced in Budget 2009; therefore, no planned spending was forecasted and the funds were transferred to ACOA in the spring of 2009.

Audit completed or planned :

  • In progress
    • Office of the Auditor General audit of the CEAP (which includes RInC) is in progress at the national level; report to be tabled October 2010.
  • Planned (for 2010-2011)
    • Audit of advances of grants and contributions; estimated completion December 2010.
    • Internal audit of CEAP (to include RInC); estimated completion March 2011.

Evaluation completed or planned:

Not applicable. There is no evaluation planned for this TPP.



Transfer Payment Program:

Saint John Shipyard Adjustment Initiative – Voted

Start date:

May 29, 2003

End date:

May 31, 2011

Description of Transfer Payment Program: 

Aims to address the impact of the lack of manufacturing activities at the site of the former Saint John shipbuilding yard, and its economic impact on the province of New Brunswick.

Strategic Outcome:

A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy

Results Achieved:

There was no activity in the 2009-2010 reporting period.

  ($ millions)
2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010
Actual
Spending
Actual
Spending
Planned
Spending
Total
Authorities
Actual
Spending
Variance
Program Activity: Community Development
Total Contributions 24.5 0.0 10.0 10.0 0.0 10.0
Total for Program Activity 24.5 0.0 10.0 10.0 0.0 10.0

Comment on Variance:

ACOA is considering a date extension in the terms and conditions, in order to consider new projects for spending beyond the current expiry date of May 31, 2011.

Audit completed or planned:

No audits completed during 2009-2010.

Evaluation completed or planned:

Not applicable. There is no evaluation planned for this initiative.




Horizontal Initiatives


Name of Horizontal Initiative

Atlantic Canada Tourism Partnership (ACTP)

Name of Lead Department

ACOA

Lead Department Program Activity

Community Development

Start Date of the Horizontal Initiative

April 1, 2009

End Date of the Horizontal Initiative

March 31, 2012

Total Federal Funding Allocation (start to end date)

$9,975,000

Description of the Horizontal Initiative

The ACTP is a nine-member, pan-Atlantic marketing consortium comprising ACOA, the four provincial tourism industry associations, and the provincial departments responsible for tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. ACTP is dedicated to promoting Atlantic Canada as a leading vacation destination in key American, European and Pacific markets. The 2009-2012 ACTP is a $19.95-million agreement that supports:

  • fully-integrated consumer, trade and media relations marketing strategies based on sound market research, economies of scale, and commonality;
  • funding that is incremental to provincial marketing budgets;
  • the preservation of provincial brand equity;
  • marketing activities being dictated by the marketplace;
  • clear and responsive measurement systems of benefit to all four Atlantic provinces; and
  • end-of-agreement project evaluations.

Additional information on ACTP can be found at: http://www.actp-ptca.ca/index.html.
A memorandum of understanding for the renewal of ACTP was signed on April 1, 2009. This initiative directly supports the Agency’s long-term strategic outcome.

Shared Outcome

The goal of the ACTP exemplifies the strategic outcomes for ACOA's priority of increasing revenues, profits, investment and wages. The ACTP’s outcomes aim to:

  • increase Atlantic Canada’s competitiveness in targeted markets;
  • promote regional co-operation (federal/provincial/industry);
  • promote incremental marketing activities;
  • achieve economies of scale in marketing;
  • raise awareness of Atlantic Canada as a “top-of-mind” destination; and
  • increase tourism arrivals and tourism revenues for the four Atlantic provinces.

The 2009-2012 ACTP is expected to generate $10 in incremental economic activity for every $1 invested in marketing. The three-year revenue target is $190 million in incremental revenues for tourism small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Atlantic Canada.

Governance Structure

The activities of the ACTP are managed by a ten-person management committee, consisting of:

  • the ACOA vice-president responsible for tourism
  • the ACOA director general of Tourism Atlantic
  • the four provincial deputy ministers responsible for tourism
  • the four tourism industry association presidents (or their permanent designates).

Decisions of this management committee are by consensus. Six members constitute a quorum, provided all four provinces are represented with government and industry both present, as well as ACOA. A representative of the Canadian Tourism Commission sits as an ex-officio member of the management committee.
The management committee is responsible for the administration and management of the agreement, allocation of annual budgets on a per market basis, approval of annual program work plans and budgets, and evaluations of program activities. It oversees the work of a marketing committee, develops and oversees a communications policy, and provides program interpretation and dispute resolution.

Federal Partner Federal Partner Program Activity Name of Program for Federal Partner Total Allocation (from start to end date) 2009-2010
Planned Spending Actual Spending Results Expected Results Achieved
ACOA Community Development Atlantic Canada Tourism Partnership $9.975 million $3.325 million $2.12 million $55.2 million in export revenues $38.6 million in export revenues*

* Source: Evaluation of the 2009-2012 Atlantic Canada Tourism Partnership, 2009-2010 Annual Report.

Comments on Variances

In 2009, ACTP implemented a change in policy direction that redirected marketing resources away from mature markets in the New England region of the United States to potentially higher-yield, but developmental, markets in the mid-Atlantic and Pacific U.S. states. During this transitional year, ACTP’s direct-to-consumer advertising investment was less than anticipated, as ACTP completed several key pieces of consumer, travel and media relations research to guide future media buys. Unspent resources will be invested in years two and three.

Results Achieved by Non-federal Partners

$10 in tourism revenues for every $1 invested in marketing.

Contact information

Rob McCloskey
Director General, Tourism Atlantic
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
P.O. Box 40
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
C1A 7K2
Telephone: 902-626-2479
E-mail: Rob.McCloskey@acoa-apeca.gc.ca


Name of Horizontal Initiative

International Business Development Agreement (IBDA)

Name of Lead Department

ACOA

Lead Department Program Activity

Enterprise Development

Start Date of the Horizontal Initiative

April 11, 2005

End Date of the Horizontal Initiative

March 31, 2011

Total Federal Funding Allocation (start to end date)

$8.4 million

Description of the Horizontal Initiative (including funding agreement)

In May 1994, ACOA entered into an agreement (Canada/Atlantic Provinces Agreement on International Business Development, also known as IBDA) with the four Atlantic provinces, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, and Industry Canada to “undertake specific measures to optimize regional coordination on a pan-Atlantic scale and combine limited resources to coordinate trade-related activities”. With an initial investment in 1994 of $3 million for three years, the agreement was extended in 1997 for an additional three years and $2 million, and in 2000 for $8 million and an additional four years. Funding was cost-shared 70/30 by the federal (through ACOA) and the provincial governments.

In 2005 with $7 million from its International Business Development Program, ACOA entered into a new IBDA with its federal and provincial partners to continue the work done in previous years. The commitment to this IBDA, with the increased funding allocation, attests to both the IBDA’s positive results and its significance for the future of the region’s international business development.
More information can be found on the IBDA home page.

Shared Outcomes

The shared outcomes for the IBDA partners support ACOA’s trade sub-activity, and are

  1. increased number of new exporters;
  2. existing exporters reporting sales to new markets; and
  3. existing exporters reporting increased sales to existing markets.

Since the original IBDA commenced in 1994, the Agency and its partners have administered over 240 projects involving some 4,500 Atlantic Canadian companies. The IBDA assisted 196 companies to begin exporting, 455 exporters to increase their export sales, and 315 exporters to expand into new markets.

Governance Structure

ACOA is the lead organization for this initiative and houses the secretariat responsible for administering the agreement. A management committee, comprising a representative from each of the partners, is responsible for the planning and management of the agreement’s programs and the evaluation of projects.

Partners

Federal departments and agencies (70% funding):

  • ACOA (lead department)
  • Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (non-funding partner)
  • Industry Canada (non-funding partner)

Provincial governments (30% funding):

  • Business New Brunswick
  • Nova Scotia Business Inc.
  • Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development
  • Prince Edward Island Department of Innovation and Advanced Learning
Federal Partner Federal Partner Program Activity Name of Program for Federal Partner Total Allocation (from start to end date)
($ millions)
Planned Spending
2009-10
($ millions)
Actual Spending
2009-10
($ millions)
Results Expected Results Achieved
2009-10
5-year agreement (2005-06 through 2009-10) 2009-10
ACOA Enterprise Development International Business Development Program 8.4 1.1 0.9 Increased number of new exporters: 40 8 4
Existing exporters reporting sales to new markets: 75 15 34
Existing exporters reporting increased sales to existing markets: 150 30 41

Comments on Variances

The IBDP did not receive the expected number of projects aimed at introducing potential exporters to international markets. The program supported more projects that targeted seasoned exporters in increasing their sales in existing markets or entering new markets.

Results Achieved by Non-federal Partners (if applicable)

Not applicable

Contact information

Michel TÍtu
Director General, Trade and Investment
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
P.O. Box 6051
Moncton, New Brunswick
E1C 9J8
Telephone: 506-851-6496


Name of Horizontal Initiative

Team Canada Atlantic (TCA)

Name of Lead Department

ACOA

Lead Department Program Activity

Enterprise Development (program sub-activity: Trade)

Start Date of the Horizontal Initiative

April 1999

End Date of the Horizontal Initiative

March 31, 2010 (Will not be renewed under the current format)

Total Federal Funding Allocation (start to end date)

$11.14 million

Description of the Horizontal Initiative (including funding agreement)

TCA is a partnership of ACOA and the four Atlantic provinces, with support from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Industry Canada, the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT), and Enterprise Cape Breton Corporation.
At the core of the TCA approach is the trade mission, which enables small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) from across Atlantic Canada to meet with potential buyers, agents, distributors and strategic partners in the United States. The mission format features a comprehensive program that equips private sector participants with the knowledge, contacts and advice they require to make the best of their international opportunities before, during and after their ventures abroad. Missions also provide the Government of Canada and the Atlantic provincial governments with crucial opportunities to promote the region as a tremendous location for foreign investment. For further information, see the TCA website at www.teamcanadaatlantic.com.

Shared Outcomes

The objectives of the TCA trade missions are:

  • to increase export-readiness for Atlantic Canadian SMEs;
  • to develop new partnerships/alliances between Atlantic Canadian SMEs and companies in target markets;
  • to increase export sales of Atlantic Canadian SMEs to new and established markets; and
  • to raise awareness in these markets of Atlantic Canada as a profitable business location.

Since its inception, Team Canada Atlantic had completed 15 missions to United States markets, involving 590 companies and more than 3,906 business meetings, and resulting in more than $51 million in actual sales.

Governance Structure

  • The management committee, comprising senior officials of ACOA, DFAIT, and provincial governments, is the decision-making body that directs and oversees the coordination and implementation of the TCA missions.
  • The organizing committee is responsible for organizing the missions, and includes representation from the four provincial trade departments in Atlantic Canada, DFAIT, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), and the TCA Secretariat.
  • The secretariat, housed at ACOA, is responsible for the overall coordination and implementation of the TCA missions.

Partners

  • ACOA
  • DFAIT – non-funding partner
  • AAFC – $7,000/mission
Federal Partner Federal Partner Program Activity Name of Program for Federal Partner Total Allocation (from start to end date)
($ millions)
Planned Spending
2009-10
($ millions)
Actual Spending
2009-10
($ millions)
Results Expected 
2009-10
Results Achieved
2009-10
ACOA Enterprise Development Team Canada Atlantic 11.14 0.0 (G&C)
.01 (O&M)
  No expected results. There was a moratorium on TCA trade missions in 2009-2010. No results were achieved as there was a moratorium on TCA trade missions in 2009-2010.
AAFC Markets and International Team Canada Atlantic .132 0.0  

Comments on Variances (planned spending vs. actual)

After 15 TCA missions to the United States, ACOA is working with federal and provincial partners in the development of a new format that will be streamlined and cost effective, in consideration of current economic conditions. The new concept will be geared toward an “integrated trade” and “global value chains” approach and will offer new tools and approaches that meet the needs of the Atlantic business community, while decreasing government resource commitments (financial and human) and generating results similar to or better than those of past missions.

Results to be Achieved by Non-federal Partners (if applicable)

Not applicable

Contact information

Michel TÍtu
Director General, Trade and Investment
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
P.O. Box 6051
Moncton, New Brunswick
E1C 9J8
Telephone: 506-851-6496




Green Procurement

Meeting Policy Requirements

Has the department incorporated environmental performance considerations in its procurement decision-making processes?

Yes

Summary of initiatives to incorporate environmental performance considerations in procurement decision-making processes:

ACOA has established green procurement targets, which have been included in the Agency’s 2007-2010 Sustainable Development Strategy (SDS). The Agency’s internal procurement policy is being updated to reflect the green procurement requirements; staff occupying procurement positions have the necessary training to support the objectives of the strategy; and benchmarks will be established to monitor progress.

Results achieved:

Internal procurement policies were revised and updated to reflect green procurement components.

A training package was developed to include ACOA’s revised policies, and training sessions were delivered to employees involved in procurement. Increased awareness and understanding of these new policies by all employees helps those in procurement service delivery introduce new products or new services and contribute to the overall government-wide implementation of green procurement. Six training sessions were delivered at head office and regional offices, and more are planned.

ACOA participated in an information session on ways to recycle the Agency’s surplus electronic and electrical equipment, to ensure all e-waste is disposed of in an environmentally sound, secure and cost-effective manner complying with the Federal Electronic Waste Strategy.

New financial coding was created to increase reporting capabilities and establish benchmarks.

Contributions to facilitate government-wide implementation of green procurement:

Updated policies have been posted on ACOA’s intranet site for easy access by all employees.

The use of Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) standing offers for green products is always considered in the Agency’s daily procurement activities.

Green Procurement Targets

Has the department established green procurement targets?

Yes  

Summary of green procurement targets:

The Agency has increased its use of remanufactured toner cartridges. This will reduce energy consumption in manufacturing and reduce wastage of cartridge shells.

The Agency has increased its volume of existing supplies being substituted by green products in the workplace. The increased use of recycled products will help reduce pollution, and using environmentally-friendly products reduces the impact on the environment.

The purchase of energy-efficient replacement equipment will help reduce energy consumption. Buying hybrid vehicles for fleet replacement will help reduce the Agency’s ecological footprint.

Results achieved:

ACOA continues the use of remanufactured toner cartridges through the use of standing offers in place. PWGSC has issued standing offers for original equipment manufacturer (OEM), which are cartridges with new elements or materials that may have been reformed from previous use. The use of PWGSC standing offers for toner cartridges results in cost savings. Empty toner cartridges are returned to suppliers at no cost, to be recycled in an environmentally-responsible manner.

The new PWGSC standing offer includes a list of green products, thereby increasing the number of products available at reduced prices. The use of financial coding created to track the procurement of green products provides a baseline for comparison, showing 61 per cent of goods procurements (excluding vehicles) identified as green products.

The purchase of energy efficient replacement equipment will result in a reduction of energy consumption; 82 per cent of equipment purchased was considered green product using the PWGSC standing offer in place.

With the use of multifunctional faxing/printing/copying units, ACOA was able to eliminate ten printers, and as a result will reduce the need to replace older units. This will result in increased efficiency of resources and cost savings.



Response to Parliamentary Committees and External Audits


Response to Parliamentary Committees
The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) appeared before two parliamentary committees in 2009-2010.

On November 23, 2009, the Honourable Keith Ashfield and ACOA’s Executive Vice-President, Paul LeBlanc, appeared before the Senate Standing Committee on Official Languages to discuss the Agency’s implementation of Part VII of the Official Languages Act (i.e. The Advancement of English and French). Minister Ashfield provided the committee with an overview of the official language minority community in Atlantic Canada. He and Mr. LeBlanc then discussed examples of the Agency’s initiatives to support the act through internal processes and policies, and through financial assistance to various projects under regular ACOA programs and the federal Economic Development Initiative.

On November 30, 2009, ACOA President, Monique Collette, and Vice-President of Finance and Corporate Services, Denise Frenette, appeared before the House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology. ACOA was one of three regional development agencies to appear before the committee at this meeting to discuss funding appropriation under Supplementary Estimates B. More specifically, the agencies discussed the administration of the Recreational Infrastructure Canada (RInC) program within their respective regions of Canada. Ms. Collette provided the members with an understanding of how ACOA is structured and its role in Atlantic Canada. She and Ms. Frenette provided examples of RInC investments in the four Atlantic provinces and explained how funds in the Supplementary Estimates were critical to realizing the success of such initiatives to stimulate the economy in Atlantic Canada.

No recommendations have been received from committees during the 2009-2010 year.

Responses to Reports by the Auditor General
(including the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development)
The Office of the Auditor General’s (OAG) audit of Canada’s Economic Action Plan (CEAP), including certain programs delivered by ACOA (Building Canada Fund, Community Adjustment Fund, RInC), is in progress at the national level. The report is to be tabled in October 2010.

The 2009 November Report of the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development included a chapter entitled “Applying the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act”, the audit coverage for which included ACOA. The audit identified a number of potential improvements in respect of the timeliness, effectiveness and quality of environmental screenings, though ACOA was not specifically mentioned in the report, and accordingly was not required to provide any response for inclusion in it. The complete report is available at http://www.oag-bvg.gc.ca/internet/English/parl_cesd_200911_e_33253.html.

External Audits
(conducted by the Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC) or the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages)
PSC Audit (in progress)
The PSC undertook an audit of the staffing function in November 2009. It was anticipated that a review of the findings would be made available to ACOA’s director general of human resources in mid-May 2010, with the final report being presented to ACOA’s President in early to mid-June 2010. In October 2010 the PSC will be tabling the results of the ACOA audit in Parliament, along with those of other organizations.

The horizontal internal audit of high risk expenditure controls in large departments and agencies (LDAs), conducted by the Office of the Comptroller General of Canada, was completed during 2009-2010. It covered a number of federal departments and agencies, including ACOA. The audit concluded that LDAs are not taking advantage of risk management to help make their account verification practices more efficient, and recommendations for improvements were made. ACOA was not referenced in the report in respect to specific weaknesses, and accordingly was not required to provide any response for inclusion in it. The complete report can be found at http://publiservice.tbs-sct.gc.ca/report/orp/2009/hia-vih-eng.asp.




Internal Audits and Evaluations

Internal Audits (in 2009-2010)


Name of Internal Audit
(and hyperlink)
Internal Audit Type Status Completion Date
Trade
 
Transfer payment Completed October 2009 1
Investment
 
Transfer payment Completed October 2009 2
Audit of Community Futures
 
Transfer payment Completed December 2009
Follow-up on the 2006-2007 Audit of Contracting
Financial management controls Completed December 2009
Audit of Venture Capital
 
Program activity Completed February 2010
Follow-up on the 2006-2007 Audit of Community Development
 
Transfer payment In progress June 2010
Audit of the Disbursement Process for Program Payments
 
Transfer payment In progress August 2010 (estimated)
Follow-up on the 2006-2007 Audit of the Business Development Program
Transfer payment In progress October 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Governance – Structure, Strategic Direction and Information for Decision Making Organizational governance In progress October 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Post-Payment Verification of Program Payments Transfer payment In progress October 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Eligibility / Due Diligence – Business Development Program – Commercial Projects Transfer payment In progress October 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Compliance With Management of Information Technology Security (MITS) Standard Information management / information technology In progress October 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Classification Human resources In progress October 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Governance – Human Resources Human resources In progress December 2010 (estimated)
Audit of Risk Management Risk management In progress December 2010 (estimated)

[1] In ACOA’s 2008-2009 Departmental Performance Report, this audit was reported as being completed in fiscal year 2008-2009. However, for administrative reasons, the final report was only posted on ACOA’s web site in October 2009.

[2] In ACOA’s 2008-2009 Departmental Performance Report, this audit was reported as being completed in fiscal year 2008-2009. However, for administrative reasons, the final report was only posted on ACOA’s web site in October 2009.

Evaluations (in 2009-2010)


Name of Evaluation
(and hyperlink)
Program Activity Program Type Status Completion Date
Community Futures
 
Community Development Summative/impact Completed June 2009
Community Investment, Community Development Resources, Official Language Minority Communities and Aboriginal Communities
 
Community Development Summative/impact Completed December 2009
Innovation
Enterprise Development Summative/impact Completed January 2010
Atlantic Policy Research Initiative Policy, Advocacy and Coordination Summative/impact Completed March 2010
Financing Continuum Enterprise Development Summative/impact In progress July 2010
Entrepreneurship and Business Skills Development Enterprise Development Summative/impact In progress July 2010
Trade and Investment Enterprise Development Summative/impact In progress July 2010