Many of the country’s top information technology (IT) executives arrive in Halifax, today, Sept. 20, to discuss ways to improve the IT business environment in Canada. The Information Technology Association of Canada is holding its board meeting in Atlantic Canada for the first time. Nova Scotia Business Inc. (NSBI) and the Information Technology Industry Alliance of Nova Scotia worked in partnership with the Information Technology Association of Canada to bring the board meeting to Halifax. “On behalf of the business and IT communities in Nova Scotia, the province is proud to host the board for the first time in Halifax,” said Premier Rodney MacDonald. “High profile gatherings like this one demonstrate that we have the people, the skills and the resources to do great things in our province’s IT sector.” As part of the meeting, board members will visit Halifax West High School where they will meet with students, answer questions and discuss the IT job opportunities available in Nova Scotia. “The province is showing our support for this sector through the IT programs and courses that we offer in our high schools, universities and colleges,” said Karen Casey, Minister of Education. “Information technology is used in every industry, from retail to forestry, and we are doing our part to make sure our young graduates have the right set of skills to be successful in this growing sector.” “The board is pleased to be in Halifax to see first-hand the great effort Nova Scotia is making in growing its IT industry,” said Bernard Courtois, president and CEO of the association. “In addition to the board meeting, we are eager to meet students at Halifax West High School, learn about their interests and talk about what IT can do for them in their careers.” The board’s program in Nova Scotia also includes a luncheon hosted by the premier. Guest speakers will discuss the results of the recent federal expert panel on commercialization. “IT is a key sector in Nova Scotia, employing about 14,000 professionals in more than 1,400 firms,” said Michael McConnell, CEO of the Information Technology Industry Alliance of Nova Scotia. “With international companies like RIM, CGI, Keane and xwave growing here, the province has more IT jobs than we’ve ever seen before.” “The success of IT companies in Nova Scotia is backed up by our province’s unique business environment and the collaboration of industry professionals, academia and multiple levels of government,” said Stephen Lund, president and CEO of NSBI. “We are eager to explore the opportunities our IT sector can bring to the province now and in the future.” The Information Technology Association of Canada is the voice of the Canadian information and communications technology industry in all sectors including telecommunications and Internet services, ICT consulting services, hardware, microelectronics, software and electronic content. The association’s network of companies accounts for more than 70 per cent of the 579,000 jobs and $137.6 billion in revenue annually to the Canadian economy. The Information Technology Industry Alliance of Nova Scotia is a non-profit organization committed to promoting the growth and development of the information technology industry in Nova Scotia. The alliance achieves its goal by developing industry skills, sharing ideas and information, building alliances, and promoting IT opportunities and events. Nova Scotia Business Inc. is Nova Scotia’s private sector-led business development agency. NSBI is the investment attraction arm of the province and helps companies in Nova Scotia meet their growth potential through business advisory, export development and financial services.