Nova Scotia Backgrounder

Manufacturing --
in a technological age

Innovation, skill and craftsmanship defined the work of Nova Scotia s original artisans. German and English boatbuilders architects of the fleet-footed ocean clippers. Creators of the renowned Bluenose and her sister fishing schooners that plied the high seas with skippers occasionally challenging their New England counterparts to fiercely fought races. Acadian dyke builders. Scottish mining engineers. They and many others created the province s adopt-adapt-improve mentality. It s a heritage that makes Nova Scotia an ideal location for the manufacturing, information, aerospace, medical and ocean research sectors that are the province s current economic cornerstones.

More than 2,000 manufacturers, many located in the 50 industrial parks across the province, produce items as diverse as aircraft and automobile parts, electrical and electronic equipment, to carpeting, chemicals and leisure equipment. Long-established Nova Scotia manufacturers include such internationally-recognized names as Volvo, Michelin, Stora, Pratt and Whitney, Litton, the IMP Group and National Sea Products. Newcomers include Dynatek Automatic Systems, one of Canada s fastest-growing computer companies, and Efamol Research, a world-class pharmaceutical research enterprise with connections in England.

Increasingly, the line between manufacture of hard commodities and information in the form of solutions narrows. Nova Scotia s technology companies are involved in a diverse range of activities and they market their products ranging from sophisticated medical training software to high-powered, solid-state radio transmitters, to airport microwave landing systems, to organic and solar aquatic waste treatment technologies around the world.

MT&T Technologies the world s first televoting system.

Internav electronic navigational aids, including an in-development Global Maritime Distress and Safety System.

NovaChem developing polymers for medical, sonar and cosmetic applications.

Focal Technologies fibre optics for underwater robots.

Satlantic marine remote sensing and satellite-based earth observation programs.

Sirius Solutions innovation in Spatial Information Management Systems (SIMS) and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) applications.

The province also offers a fertile working environment for innovative ideas and smaller companies developing their potential. The Nova Scotia Research Foundation Corp., a government-funded but market-driven institution, provides technology assistance for private sector product development.

Attracted by the visual appeal and versatility of the area, and the well-developed base of local technical skills, the motion picture industry has also found Nova Scotia a popular location in recent years. Two major films The Scarlet Letter, and Dolores Claiborne recently contributed over $45 million to the local economy.