As Canada’s Minister of International Trade, it gives me great pleasure to welcome readers of the 2016 edition of Location Canada.
There has never been a better time to invest in Canada. Our country offers investors an attractive business environment, abundant human and natural resources, and vibrant, connected communities with the highest quality of life among 60 countries.
Canada’s real competitive advantage is its people. Canada offers businesses the most educated talent pool among OECD countries. Canadians are also global citizens with connections to the rest of the world. Together, Canadians have created a stable and inclusive democracy with world-class clusters of innovation and government as a supporting partner.
Canada’s dynamism is reflected in our economy. Forbes, Bloomberg and the Economist Intelligence Unit all rate Canada as the best country in the G20 to do business. According to KPMG’s 2016 Competitive Alternatives, overall business costs in Canada are 14.6 percent lower than the U.S. KPMG also concluded that the federal government’s commitment to driving investment in transportation, climate mitigation, and social infrastructure will continue to make Canada an attractive investment location. In addition, Canada’s total business tax rate is the second-lowest in the G20. It should come as no surprise that a survey of more than 4,000 business decision-makers ranked Canada as the best country in the world to headquarter a company.
Furthermore, Canada’s economy is highly integrated into the North American economy and benefits from the region’s cross-border supply chains. In 2018, we will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the U.S. and Mexico. Since NAFTA entered into force, Canada has added trade agreements in Central and South America, Asia, and Europe, and our Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the European Union is expected to enter into force in early 2017. CETA is one of the most ambitious and progressive trade agreements ever concluded by either Canada or the EU. When it comes into force, Canada will have free-trade agreements with more than 40 countries with nearly 1.2 billion consumers and a combined GDP of almost US$39 trillion, making Canada an ideal base for any company.
Canada is open for business. With our solid banking system, deep and highly skilled talent pool, innovative entrepreneurs, low taxes, easy access to markets, generous support for research and development, and strong commitment to free and open trade, Canada should be your preferred destination for investment. A key part of my mandate is to make Canada an even better place to invest. This includes working to facilitate access to the services foreign investors need to make investing in Canada more attractive. I invite you to learn more about Canada’s competitive advantages within these pages and at www.investincanada.com.
The Honourable Chrystia Freeland
Minister of International Trade