Nova Scotia is helping a Halifax software development centre achieve world-class technical and operational certification. The province is providing a $1.5-million performance-based incentive to help CGI earn certifications that show the world it uses the most rigorous industry methods and business standards at its International Software Development Centre in Halifax. “This investment in the information technology sector is helping to secure hundreds of high-paying knowledge jobs and to ensure Nova Scotia remains innovative as we compete in the global economy,” Economic Development Minister Ernest Fage said. “This incentive will also strengthen Nova Scotia’s growing reputation as one of the best destinations for global high-tech firms.” CGI is investing up to $8 million to improve its software development centre in Halifax. As part of the company’s long-term commitment to the region, CGI plans to make its software development centre the hub of a network of application development centres in other Atlantic locations. Provincial funding will help CGI achieve ISO 9001 certification and Level 3 of the capability maturity model, or CMM. CMM levels determine an organization’s ability to use an approved set of software-development processes, and are the industry standard for evaluating the state of application-development organizations. ISO 9001 is a standard for quality management that is accepted around the world. The company, with 25,000 professionals working for it worldwide, currently employs more than 400 people in Nova Scotia. It expects to double that number within the next few years. These positions pay significantly above the average provincial wage. This agreement complements an $8.5-million payroll rebate approved for CGI by Nova Scotia Business Inc. in September 2004, which encourages CGI to grow beyond Halifax and spread the IT-skills base into rural Nova Scotia. Both incentives are part of the government’s ongoing commitment in its growth strategy to strengthen IT as a sector of strategic importance to Nova Scotia’s future growth.