Written by Will Osler and Alexandra Rayment
In June 2020, the Government of Alberta released the provincial economic Recovery Plan. The plan included creating the Invest Alberta Corporation (IAC), a dedicated investment promotion agency based in Alberta.
Enabling legislation for the IAC, Bill 33: Alberta Investment Attraction Act, underwent first reading in the legislature on July 7, 2020. The Act defines the corporation's governance structure, corporate mandate, and duties.
If passed, the IAC will operate at arms-length from the province, with oversight from the Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Tourism, and subject to regulation. The IAC will be governed by an appointed board of directors that will manage the corporation's business and affairs and may appoint a chief executive officer.
IAC to Attract Job-Creating Investment
The purpose of the IAC is to promote and drive economic growth and job creation in Alberta through investment. The legislated mandate is to identify and pursue high-value or high-impact investment opportunities to bring job-creating private-sector investment to Alberta from around the world.
To fulfill its mandate, the IAC may:
- make a grant or contribution;
- make a loan or acquire an existing loan;
- issue loan guarantees;
- purchase shares or other forms of equity; and
- enter into joint ventures or partnerships.
IAC communications will highlight Alberta's low tax rates, skilled workforce and business-friendly policies. IAC promotion will target key companies, sectors and markets, including London, New York, Hong Kong, Singapore, Toronto and Houston, to attract potential investors.
A news release from the Alberta Government specifies that the IAC will pursue investment in Alberta's high-growth industries—technology, aviation and aerospace, and financial services.
Finally, if established the IAC will deliver investment attraction services to stimulate investment prospects benefitting the Alberta economy. This service will include, for example, support for prospective investors to navigate through regulatory processes.
Bennett Jones will continue to monitor the progress of Bill 33. Please visit our COVID-19 Resource Centre for other COVID-19-related materials.