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Regional Development Program: Eastern Ontario Development Fund



The Regional Development Program takes a coordinated approach to supporting business growth in eastern and southwestern Ontario. The program supports eligible small- and medium-sized businesses investing in new equipment and training to expand operations in these regions, and also provides support to municipalities and not-for-profit organizations investing in economic development projects. Eligible applicants may receive financial support and advisory services to help navigate other government programs, such as guidance on compliance approvals, assistance with skills and talent, and information regarding Ontario’s corporate tax credits.

How it works

The Eastern Ontario Development Fund provides support for projects and investments to businesses, municipalities and not-for-profit organizations for economic development in eastern Ontario.

The types of support available include:

    • funding support

    • complementary services and support

The fund supports projects that:

    • create jobs and build talent

    • attract and encourage private sector investment

    • lead to business growth and broad positive economic impacts

    • encourage innovation, collaboration and cluster development

The geographic area

Eastern Ontario includes the following 15 geographic areas:

Eastern Ontario includes the following 15 geographic areas:

    • Frontenac

    • Haliburton

    • Hastings

    • Kawartha Lakes

    • Lanark

    • Leeds and Grenville

    • Lennox and Addington

    • Muskoka

    • Northumberland

    • Ottawa

    • Peterborough

    • Prescott and Russell

    • Prince Edward

    • Renfrew

    • Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry

Types of support


Business Projects
Funding amount
Up to 15% of eligible project costs.

Up to 15% funding to a maximum of $5M, interest free during the project period (up to 4 years). If you achieve your investment and job targets, up to 30% of the loan (to a maximum of $500,000) may be forgiven.

Grants are available only for specific circumstances, up to 15% to a maximum:

    • Of $500,000 if your company has fewer than 100 employees and is based in rural Ontario (population of your community is less than 100,000 or population density is less than 100 people per square kilometre)

    • Of $1,500,000 for strategic projects that are foreign direct investments or from companies competing against other jurisdictions (in limited circumstances)

You are not allowed to combine (or “stack”) Eastern Ontario Development funding with other provincial programs.

Community Economic Development projects
Funding amount
Up to 50% of eligible project costs for a maximum grant of up to $1.5 million.

You are not allowed to combine (or “stack”) Eastern Ontario Development funding with other provincial programs.

Complementary Services and Support

Business projects
Businesses may be eligible for other assistance related to advisory services, assistance with environmental compliance approvals, assistance in accessing skills and talent and information related to leveraging available tax credits.

Community economic development projects
Applicants may be eligible for other assistance related to advisory services and navigation support for land-use planning and workforce development.

Sudden economic downturn

If your municipality is dealing with a sudden economic downturn like a major plant closure, we may be able to provide support to help your community implement a response strategy. This includes municipalities all across Ontario. Contact us to discuss your proposed project.

Please note that the proposed project should not be eligible for funding under other provincial programs.


Eligibility checklists can be submitted at any time.

There are four application intake periods per year for full applications. Applicants will be notified of decisions within 60 business days of the application deadline.

Application periods:

Application periods:

Application Periods

Accepting Applications

Application Deadline Dates

Application Assessment Periods (60 business days)

Notification Date (last day to notify applicants)

Application Period Q4 2019-20

Application period ending January 20, 2020 is now closed.  Applicants with complete applications will be notified of a decision by April 16, 2020.

Application Period Q1 2020-21

March 5, 2020-April 20, 2020

April 20, 2020

April 21, 2020-July 15, 2020

July 15, 2020

Application Period Q2 2020-21

June 5, 2020-July 20, 2020

July 20, 2020

July 21, 2020-October 15, 2020

October 15, 2020

Application Period Q3 2020-21

September 3, 2020-October 19, 2020

October 19, 2020

October 20, 2020-January 15, 2021

January 15, 2021

Application Period Q4 2020-21

December 3, 2020-January 18, 2021

January 18, 2021

January 19, 2021-April 15, 2021

April 15, 2021

Eligibility Requirements

The fund supports business and community economic development projects.

Business projects

To be eligible, businesses need to:

    • have at least 3 years of operations/financial statements

    • employ at least 10 people (or 5 if you are in rural Ontario)

    • commit to creating at least 5 new jobs (or 30% increase for companies with fewer than 15 employees)

    • invest at least $500,000 in their project (or $200,000 if you are in rural Ontario)

    • be located in, or plan to locate in, a community in eastern Ontario

Community economic development projects

To be eligible, projects need to:

    • be led by municipalities, economic development organizations or sector organizations

    • focus on economic and business development and job creation in the community or region by investing in infrastructure or implementing strategies to advance regional economic development priorities

    • lead to measurable outcomes including private sector investment, growth and job creation

    • invest more than $100,000

    • have private sector support

    • be used for activities that are new to the organization

How to apply

Step 1: Contact a regional advisor for help with your application.

Step 2: Register for Transfer Payment Ontario.

Step 3: Submit an eligibility checklist. Staff will confirm whether your project is eligible.

Step 4: Once you know you are eligible, working with your regional advisor, complete the application forms and submit along with the required information.

Selection process

Successful projects need to:

    • align with the fund’s goals of investment attraction and job creation

    • provide economic benefits (create jobs, contribute to the region or develop the sector)

    • be achievable (i.e. applicants need to have the necessary financing, project management structure and experience to implement the project)

The first step in the application process is to speak with a Regional Advisor who can help you complete and submit the checklist. Please refer to the “Contact” section below for more information.

Eligibility Checklists are accepted on a continuous basis and should be submitted well in advance of the intake round deadlines or the project.

Program Documents


For advice on developing and strengthening your application, you are invited to contact your regional advisor or our Business Advisory Services:

Toll-free: 1-800-267-6592ext. 224


For more information, please contact us at: eodf@ontario.ca

Last updated: March 5, 2020