New England clean energy sector creates opportunity for N.B. companies
David Alward, consul general to New England, says Massachusetts passed legislation to allow hydro contracts
Former New Brunswick premier David Alward, Canada's consul general to New England, says there are opportunities for Atlantic Canada in the clean energy sector in the eastern United States.
Alward, who was appointed to the job just over a year ago, says the Massachusetts State House recently passed legislation to allow the state to enter into contracts for Canadian hydro.
"I believe, and I certainly hope, we'll see benefits to our whole region, which is a great opportunity for all of us and I believe is just on the cusp of even greater opportunities down the road," Alward said, speaking with Information Morning Fredericton.
I believe ... we'll see benefits to our whole region.- David Alward, Canadian consul general
Alward says the change will allow Canadian companies to compete for long-term contracts to provide energy in Massachusetts, which he says is great news for the Atlantic region.
"Clean technology is another important part of that opportunity," he said.
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Alward says there's also a great deal of opportunity in the Boston-area technology and venture capital sectors for Canadian companies.
The Canadian Technology Accelerator program, based in Cambridge and operated by the consulate, has eight to 10 start-ups on the go every four months, Alward says, which gives them a "soft landing" into a large and significant export market.
The program recently won the International Business Innovation Association (InBIA) award for accelerator program of the year for 2016.
Another key part of his role, he says, is to work on bilateral trade opportunities that will benefit both countries.
"We're also based here in helping that flow both ways — growing Canada's footprint here, but very importantly, as well, growing U.S. companies in Canada.