submitted by the PEI BioAlliance
Bioscience companies engage in the research, development, and commercialization of bioactive-based human, animal, and fish health and nutrition products.
An economic impact assessment released in February 2020 confirms that the province’s bioscience industry has grown to become a key component of the Island’s economy.
The assessment measured the contribution of the bioscience sector between 2012 and 2018. The study found that bioscience has become one of the most important sectors of the provincial economy, directly contributing $214 million in GDP in 2018, employing 1,900 people.
The bioscience cluster now accounts for 4.4 percent of the entire provincial economy, second only to the agri-food sector.
“These positive results are a testament to the BioAlliance model, a partnership among industry, researchers, academia, and government agencies, working together to build the bioscience sector on PEI,” says Dr. Russ Kerr, Board Chair, PEI BioAlliance.
The PEI bioscience cluster includes more than 60 bioscience companies as well as research and development organizations such as the National Research Council, University of Prince Edward Island, the Atlantic Veterinary College, Holland College, Agriculture and AgriFood Canada, and BioFoodTech.
The PEI bioscience cluster continues to be a high-value industry employing highly skilled and well-paid workers. At $60,900 per year, the average employment income of workers in the bioscience sector is 44 percent higher than the average for all workers on the Island.
“It’s remarkable how much the bioscience industry has grown on PEI over the years, and in return, significantly contributes to our provincial economy,” says Economic Growth, Tourism and Culture Minister Matthew MacKay.
“This momentum is a reflection of the hardworking and innovative Islanders collaborating and building partnerships with companies around the world.”
Findings also show that the bioscience cluster is a significant contributor of tax revenue, generating $63.6 million in 2018. Bioscience companies bring national and international capital to PEI, with $37 million in investment in 2018.
Growth in the bioscience sector is also attracting a high number of newcomers, with 43 percent of firms surveyed having at least one founder who was not born in Canada.
The resilience and future prosperity of the sector is also demonstrated by the many PEI bioscience companies conducting research, development, and manufacturing to source solutions to support the fight against COVID-19.
This includes developing protective equipment and medical devices, products to strengthen human resistance to diseases, technologies to test if someone is or has been infected by COVID-19, as well as technologies to give specialists an online view for remote diagnoses.
Bioscience businesses have maintained operations throughout the COVID 19 pandemic, as essential manufacturers in the province.
“Bioscience is clearly one of the fastest-growing sectors of our economy,” said Kerr. “We will continue working together to establish the infrastructure and skilled workforce necessary to support that growth.”
To read the full Economic Impact Assessment report, visit www.peibioalliance.com/EIA.
About the PEI BioAlliance
Since 2005, the PEI BioAlliance has coordinated the development and growth of the province’s bioscience cluster and established the conditions for business success. The cluster creates high-quality, Island-based jobs in the areas of human, animal, and fish health and nutrition.
The PEI BioAlliance is a partnership of 60 businesses, academic and research institutions, and federal and provincial government agencies, dedicated to establishing the bioscience sector as a key pillar in the economic foundation of the province and Atlantic Canada.
For more information, visit www.peibioalliance.com.