Thursday, July 14, 2011

CIJA further supports CIIRDF

The Canadian Council for Israel and Jewish Advocacy (CIJA) as many of you may or may not know, is the arm of UIA Federations Canada, comprised of all the public affairs agencies of the Canadian Jewish community. Under the umbrella of CIJA those who became a part of the unified organization earlier this month, namely the Canadian Jewish Congress (CJC) the Canada Israel Committee (CIC) and the Quebec Israel Committee (QIC), were represented on July 10 at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

The purpose of the event at the museum: a renewed bilateral agreement was signed to fund and support the Canada Israel Industrial Research and Development Foundation (CIIRDF) for another five years. The foundation was first established in 1994 for research and development and the commercialization of new technology to be pursued by private companies from both countries. With more than 70 projects supported since the foundation was created a yield of approximately $1 billion in revenue has been achieved.

The success of the CIIRDF is attributed to having a similar design to the Israel-U.S. Bi-national Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) initiative. CIIRDF contributes up to 50 per cent of the joint R&D costs for Canadian and Israeli companies' joint activities.

Many Israeli and Canadian leaders were on hand at the museum for the high profile event. Among them, former Israeli Ambassador to Canada Haim Divon; chairman of the Israel-Canada Parliamentary Friendship Group in Knesset MK Yohanan Plesner, and The CJN's columnist and Professor of the Harman Center at McGill University Gil Troy. Additionally representing the Jewish community of Canada were MP for Mount Royal Irwin Cotler and CIJA CEO Shimon Fogel.

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