Ontario offers C$150 million to woo biotech investment

Wed Jan 9, 2008 1:21pm EST
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TORONTO (Reuters) - The Ontario provincial government said on Wednesday it planned to spend C$150 million to attract biopharmaceutical research to Canada's most populous province.

The money, earmarked to create jobs in biopharmaceutical research, will be available to companies through grants, various loans, and funds for building infrastructure, research and training.

"The significant investments that biopharmaceutical companies make in health research are essential to the growth and success of our emerging biotechnology industry, and other sectors that are important to Ontario's economy," John Wilkinson, minister of research and innovation, said in a release.

Ontario's biotech sector employs more than 9,000 people and is home to health-care firms such as Biovail Corp, MDS Inc and privately held Apotex.

($1=$1.00 Canadian)

(Reporting by Scott Anderson; Editing by Peter Galloway)