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2024 Canadian Federal Budget: Grants and Funding Opportunities for Businesses

By Diane Amato

Published April 26, 2024 • 3 Min Read

The recent Canadian Federal Budget announced a number of measures to help small businesses navigate today’s economy – from funding for tech adoption and training programs to rebates and green initiatives.

We asked Managing Partner of GrantMatch, Mike Janke to share key funding program announcements found in the Budget. 

“There are a number of major economic changes happening and businesses need to adjust their plans and invest strategically. The Canadian Federal government is supporting and incentivizing these major transformations such as environmental impacts, Artificial Intelligence and Housing. If you can align your business investments with the government, you may be able to unlock grants and funding and accelerate your business plan.”


New Canada Carbon Rebate for Small Businesses: $2.5B to return fuel charge proceeds from 2019 to 2024 through direct CRA refunds and tax credits.

Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative: $200M over two years starting in 2026-27 to increase venture capital for entrepreneurs.

Regional Economic Growth through Innovation Fund: An additional $158.5M over two years to the regional development agencies to boost regional economic growth.

Futurpreneur Canada: $60M over five years to assist young entrepreneurs with access to funding and support services.

Stay up to date with government funding opportunities by subscribing to The GrantMatch Hub.


AI Compute Access Fund: $2.4B over five years to launch and support researchers, start-ups, and the scale-up of the development of AI businesses and the industry. $200M to be allocated to regional development agencies for AI start-ups and critical sector adoption.

NRC IRAP AI Assist Program: $100M over five years to help small- and medium-sized businesses scale-up and increase productivity through AI solutions.

$50M over five years for a new Canadian AI Safety Institute for the safe deployment of AI.

$5.1M for an Office of the AI and Data Commissioner to protect Canadians from potential risks of AI and to ensure responsible adoption by Canadian businesses.

Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Tax Credit: $600M over four years with $150M for future enhancements to the program. The second phase of consultations announced to determine how funding will be targeted.

Increase core research grant funding to $1.8B over five years for the federal research grants through the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). A new capstone research funding organization to be created to improve the coordination of federal research funds.

Businesses to be permitted to immediately write off as a capital cost allowance the full cost of investment in patents, data network infrastructure equipment, computers, and data processing equipment until January 1, 2027. Estimated cost: $725M over five years.


To train and hire skilled trade workers to build more homes: $90M over two years allocated for the Apprenticeship Service to create apprenticeship opportunities.

Foreign Credential Recognition Program: $50M over two years to remove barriers to credential recognition to decrease delays and get more skilled trades working in the field.

Student Work Placement Program: $207.6M in 2025-26 for work-integrated learning opportunities for post-secondary students.

$200.5M in 2025-25 for the Canada Summer Jobs program and $150.7M for the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy program for youth job placements.

Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program: $50M over four years for skills training to support workers impacted by AI.

Canada Media Fund: $40M over two years

RBC clients receive preferred pricing on GrantMatch services. Apply for a grant using the exclusive GrantMatch Funding Assessment & Strategy Tool (FAST). Learn More

This article is intended as general information only and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. Information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date but we do not guarantee its accuracy and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or any of its affiliates.

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