According to recent estimates, Canada’s 2018 GERD is expected to grow 1.3% to CAD 34.5 billion ($25.3 billion), with the increase largely the result of R&D spending by the business and higher education sectors.

Business R&D grew 1.9% to CAD 17.9 billion ($13.2 billion) in 2018, while the higher education sector spent $14.1 billion, an increase of approximately 1%. Since 1975, the business and higher education sectors have been the largest R&D performers in Canada, representing 67% of total GERD. Since 2015, the two sectors have represented the highest share of R&D performed in Canada at 93%. Between the business and higher education sectors, the share of business R&D expenditure has been trending downwards, while the share of higher education R&D expenditure has been trending upwards, reaching 48% of total GERD in 2018, compared to the business sector’s share of 52%.

Federal R&D expenditures in 2018 totaled 6% of GERD at CAD 2.0 billion ($1.5 billion), representing 20% of total funding, a 1% increase. Ninety-two percent of business R&D funding was used by Canadian businesses, while all higher education R&D funding was for its own sector. Nearly 33% of federal funding was for in-house R&D projects, and 54% was utilized in the higher education sector.

The vast majority of R&D spending is in the natural sciences and engineering sector, with the sector accounting for 90% of GERD in 2018 at CAD 30.8 billion ($22.7 billion) in 2018, a 1.4% increase.

Source: Statistics Canada

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