In 2003, the Government of B.C. established Forestry Innovation Investment (FII) to work with industry and the federal government to help maintain, create and diversify markets for B.C. forest products. We work with and support the forest sector to bring advanced wood products and technologies to market; promote our products and forest management practices to the global marketplace; and leverage our resources to ensure the forest sector continues to be a key contributor to the B.C. economy.
FII's mandate is to:
- position B.C. as a global supplier of world-class environmentally friendly forest products;
- actively maintain, create and diversify demand for B.C. forest products in Canada and in key world markets;
- help break down non-tariff trade and market barriers to ensure opportunities for B.C. forest products;
- work with the forest industry to promote B.C.’s forest products and forest management to the global marketplace; and
- help ensure that the forest sector, through product development and strong international sales, continues to be a leading contributor to the B.C. economy.
FII is governed by a Board of Directors, is accountable to the B.C. Minister of International Trade, and operates out of offices in Vancouver, Shanghai, Beijing, Mumbai, and Bangalore.
Industry provides strategic input to FII and the Board via three advisory bodies:
- Market Priorities Committee
- Market Acceptance Advisory Committee
- Wood First Advisory Committee
Programs and Services
For a comprehensive overview of FII and partner activities delivered over the past year, as well as a more thorough description of our programs and how they are delivered, please download our 2016 Report to Stakeholders. Other documents including our Service Plan, Annual Report, Strategic Plan and more can be accessed on our Corporate Reports page.
The following highlights the activities delivered by each of FII's three program areas.
The Market Initiatives program encourages the development of export markets and new market segments, particularly in the fast growing markets of Asia. This helps to diversify the sector, open up new opportunities, and sustain forest sector employment. Recognizing the long-standing importance of the North American market, the Market Initiatives program also focuses on high potential market segments for B.C. wood products in North America. Under the program, FII works collaboratively with the forest industry, the federal government and the research community, focusing activities and leveraging resources to maximize results.
Many of the activities in the Market Initiatives program are delivered by third-party organizations under a cost-sharing framework that relies partially on contributions from the industry and the federal government of Canada. Organizations receive funding from FII through an annual competitive Call for Proposals.
The Wood First program focuses on advancing wood use and innovative wood construction technologies in B.C., and establishing the province as a showcase for forest products in construction, interior design, and daily living. The scope includes both residential and non-residential buildings.
Planning and delivery of the program is a collaborative effort involving the building construction industry and the forest sector. With guidance from the Wood First Advisory Committee, FII provides overall management and administration of the program including aligning priorities and ensuring the best use of the funds.
Specifically, Wood First focuses on:
The activities of the Wood First program are primarily delivered by third-party organizations under a cost-sharing framework that relies partially on contributions from the industry. Organizations receive funding from FII through an annual competitive Call for Proposals.
Market Outreach works to expand opportunities for B.C. forest products by positioning wood as an environmentally-friendly, preferred building material, and by highlighting B.C. as a reliable supplier of quality products from sustainably-managed forests. These activities create a solid foundation for answering the questions, “Why wood?” and “Why wood from B.C.?” – upon which many of the market development investments and activities of FII and industry are based.
The program focuses on taking advantage of two significant trends in the marketplace – the emerging recognition of wood products as renewable and sustainable, and increasing demands from consumers for forest products that are produced in an environmentally-responsible manner.
Specifically, the program:
While individual firms and their trade associations do a good job of telling customers about the physical attributes of specific product lines and how they can be used, the Market Outreach program provides audiences with factual, consistent and credible information about the environmental parameters of B.C.’s forest products and the forest practices that underlie their production.
Innovation - FII responds to changing market, economic and geo-political forces that affect the forest economy and invests in new programs and research that offer competitive advantages to the forest sector and where there is an opportunity to influence growth.
Public Benefit - FII investments support the long-term development of the forest sector in general and cannot be used to provide an exclusive benefit to a particular company or its protected product. Results of FII supported activities are publically available.
Credibility and Integrity - FII activities and funded projects are based on government and industry priorities and strategies developed in partnership with stakeholders in industry, the research sector and government.
Collaboration - FII encourages collaboration and coordination among forest product firms, trade associations, academic institutions and others, including the joint development of marketing strategies, sharing of information, and pooling of resources.
Active Engagement - FII is actively involved in the market and product development programs it funds and delivers.
Risk Management - FII mitigates market development risk by pursuing a mix of potential short-term and long-term returns, and spreading programs across current and potential markets. FII accepts a higher level of risk in emerging markets where commercial success is relatively more speculative.
Accountability - Activities are expected to be founded on clear objectives, generate a positive return, have well‐developed performance measures, and lead to documented results.
How Services are Delivered
FII is focussed on delivering value through partnerships by investing through and with other organizations. FII brings together the expertise and resources of industry and two levels of government to maximize the impact of the programs we fund and deliver. We work with more than two dozen industry trade associations, research institutions and trade development agencies and attract approximately $3.00 in outside funding for every dollar invested in market development programs.