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Investing in Canada

Laws and Regulations

Investing in Canada

When a country has as much to offer as Canada , it.s impossible to pinpoint a single reason to invest in one of the most dynamic economies in the world. Canada boasts multiple advantages and unparalleled potential . a place where businesses can achieve excellence on a global scale.

  • People Advantage: Canada is a nation of intelligent, educated workers, ranking #1 in the OECD in higher education achievement.

Innovative and Diverse

A country.s greatest asset in a knowledge economy is a smart workforce and Canada is rich in talented human resources.  Canada spends more money on education, as a percentage of GDP, than any other country in the world and is rewarded with the most highly-educated population on the planet. Canada also attracts the best and brightest from every corner of the globe. In 2008, the IMD ranked Canada first among G7 countries for its ability to attract and retain talented workers to strengthen its workforce. Business-friendly immigration policies enable highly qualified newcomers to contribute their skills and talents to Canada and ensure a consistent supply of new knowledge workers.  Immigrants currently make up more than 70% of all Canadian labour force growth.

Smart Workforce

#1 in the OECD in higher education achievement.More than half of Canadians between the ages of 25 to 35 have a post-secondary education, either at university, college or technical school. Source: IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook, 2007

Over 42% of all immigrants have completed university and 16% have a trade certificate or non-university diploma.In addition to existing high levels of education, almost 90% of immigrants continue to take education or training courses upon their arrival in Canada.  Sources:  Citizenship and Immigrant Canada, Facts and Figures, 2007.  Longitudinal Survey of Immigrants to Canada, Statistics Canada, 2005

1st in North America for secondary school enrolment.Canada ranks 3rd in the world, far head of the US (26th ) and Mexico (53rd ). Source: IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook, 2007

One of the world.s top performers. In business education, Canadian schools excel by any measure. The IMD ranks Canada first in the G7 for its finance programs. In Business Week magazine.s 2008 MBA survey, three Canadian business schools finished among the top 10 outside the United States: Queen.s (first), Western Ontario (fourth), and Toronto (eighth).

Superior Education.The World Economic Forum also placed Canada in the top 10 in a 125-country study of management education available locally in first-class business schools. And according to the Financial Times. Global MBA rankings for 2009, five Canadian management schools rank among the top 100 worldwide.

  • Business Environment Advantage: The Economic Intelligence Unit has rated Canada the #1 place to do business in the G7 for the next five years.

World-class Performer

Canada understands the importance of its business community and has created an environment to encourage its success. Name an international study and, odds are, Canada ranks as the top choice for its many competitive advantages.

Canada leads all G7 countries in ease of doing business, according to the 2008 IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook. Also, the Economic Intelligence Unit forecasts Canada as the #1 place to do business in the G7 for the next five years.

Nexus for International Business Opportunities

US: Canada is America's largest trading partner. The United States does more business with Canada than with all the countries of the European Union combined!

Europe: European markets provide tremendous trade opportunities for Canada. Some of the most important exports to the European Union are chemicals, machinery, transport equipment, computer electronics products and minerals.

Asia: A maritime nation, Canada has exceptional access to Asia-Pacific markets. With its geographical location, strong immigration links and membership in APEC that reduces trade barriers, Canada is well positioned to capitalize on the long-term growth potential of Asian economies. To maximize its strategic access and enhance its competitive position, Canada has launched the $590 million Pacific Gateway Strategy to support stronger infrastructure links among Canada, NAFTA and Asia-Pacific markets.

Magnet for the Best and the Brightest

Canada is world renowned for its beauty and abundance of natural resources, but it is increasingly recognized for its brainpower.  Canada has invested billions of dollars over the last decade to create a robust research and development (R&D) climate that is second to none. Canada ranks second behind the U.S. among the G-7 and fourth in a 134-country review of the quality of scientific research undertaken in government and university laboratories. The Canadian Foundation for Innovation funds technology clusters across the country in domains ranging from pharmaceuticals to fuel cells to information and communications technologies (ICT). 

Among Leaders in IT Industry Competitiveness

    Canada ranks third behind the U.S. and the U.K. among the G-7 and sixth in a 66-country review of the countries best suited to provide an optimally competitive environment for information technology (IT) firms.
  • The US and Canadian telecommunications and automobile industries are virtually integrated across the Canada-U.S. border.
  • Cutting-edge American producers recognize Canadian leadership in industries such as fibre optics, aerospace and biotechnology.
  • Economic Advantage: Canada has a robust and growing economy, projected to grow in 2006-07 by 2.8% according to the OECD.s Economic Outlook.

Extraordinary Record

"Canada is better placed than many countries to weather the global financial turbulence and worldwide recession. Its resilience can be attributed to three factors: First, a track record of sound macroeconomic policy management has left the country in prime form at the beginning of the global turmoil .Second, the authorities responded proactively to the crisis .Third, the focus on financial stability. "

Charles Kramer, Division Chief, Western Hemisphere Department, International Monetary Fund.

Take Canada.s prudent fiscal policy, low inflation, interest and unemployment rates, and a corporate tax framework that is among the best in the world.  Factor in Canada.s status as an emerging energy superpower, the only stable and growing producer of this scarce commodity in an unstable world. Add to that the country.s strategic investments in technology, education and healthcare. The result is perfectly ideal conditions for businesses to grow and prosper.

Quarter-over-quarter, year after year, Canada's outstanding track record sets it apart from its competitors. The 2007 Canadian budget plan projected the country.s 11th straight surplus . the longest stretch of surpluses since Canada was formed in 1867 and the only one among G7 countries . and there.s no end in sight. With this winning combination, solid growth is the defining feature of Canada.s dynamic and diversified economy.

AAA credit rating: In response to Canada.s improved fiscal balance sheet and excellent long-term growth prospects, the country has enjoyed an AAA international credit rating (the highest rating) from Moody.s Investors Services since 2002.

In the mid-1990s, Canada.s total net debt-to-GDP ratio was the second highest in the G7. Today, it is the lowest. The Economic Intelligence Unit projects Canada.s inflation rate of 2.1% to remain the same for the next five years, compared to 3.2% for the U.S.

Banks You Can Bank On

The global economic crisis may be deepening, but Canadian financial institutions remain resilient. According to the World Economic Forum.s 2008-2009 Global Competitiveness Report, Canada has the soundest banking system anywhere. Canada's well-regulated financial institutions, banks, trust companies, cooperatives, insurance companies and stock exchanges, have demonstrated a stability and competitiveness that has made their services popular around the world. The sector has become one of Canada's major export earners since the worldwide liberalization of financial regulations. Canada.s other financial institutions are equally impressive, offering investment opportunities that are both lucrative and safe.

Support When You Need It

Canada's Export Development Corporation (EDC) provides trade finance and risk management services to Canadian exporters and foreign investors.

  • Tax Advantage: Canada offers businesses low tax rates, boasting the lowest payroll taxes among the G7 countries.

Incentives for Industry

The World Trade Magazine has ranked Canada in the Top 3 for Investment and Trade Opportunities, and with good reason.

Canada offers businesses low tax rates. Today, Canada has the lowest payroll taxes among the G7 countries and by 2012 Canada's corporate income tax rate will fall from 19 percent to 15 percent. less than half of the U.S. rate.

National Incentives

Canada.s proactive federal government wants your business and it pulls out all the stops to make it worth your while. To truly welcome foreign investment, it offers numerous incentives to ensure new businesses will be successful.

Scientific Research and Experimental Development Program
Business involved in research and development can apply for tax credits on expenditures such as wages, materials and equipment. Administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

Industrial Research Assistance Program
Small- and medium-sized foreign subsidiaries incorporated in Canada can apply for on-site aid from IRAP's Technology Advisors. Administered by the National Research Council of Canada.

BDC Financing
The Business Development Bank of Canada funds companies with a basis in technology and a sustainable, market-oriented business plan.

Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
NSERC works with companies that have been provincially or federally incorporated in Canada to encourage research and development in collaboration with universities and students.

Precarn funds projects involving the participation of at least two companies and one university, and works with funding programs in other companies to support research and development in the field of intelligence systems.

Film Industry Services
The Canada Revenue Agency administers two film tax credit programs to help the film industry in Canada.

To be eligible for most incentives, you must have a company established in Canada.

  • NAFTA Advantage: Canada .s NAFTA advantage gives investors access to more than 443 million consumers and a combined GDP of more than US$15.4 trillion.

North America.the World.s Largest, Richest Market

Want access to more than 447 million consumers and a combined GDP of more than US$17.4 trillion?  Look no further than Canada.

America.s #1 Trading Partner

. by a long shot.  Two-way goods-and-services trade between Canada and the United States amounted to C$740 billion dollars in 2008, or nearly C$1.4 million a minute in trade.  That.s more than trade between the United States and all of the countries of the European Union combined. Source: Statistics Canada, February 27, 2009.

Closer to the US than . . . the US

Many Canadian production hubs are actually closer to target U.S. markets than American production sites. Of Canada's 20 largest cities, 17 are within an hour and a half drive of the United States and many are much closer. Several, such as Vancouver, Windsor, and Montreal, are only minutes away.

Production locations in Quebec and the industrial heartland of southwestern Ontario are often closer to the huge American markets around New York, Boston, and Chicago than popular American production hubs like Atlanta, GA, and Raleigh, NC.

Smart Borders

Fast and efficient trucking, railways, ocean shipping and air services link the two countries. To accommodate the growth in trade and commerce, Canada and the United States have signed a pact to work together to create a Smart Border. The Declaration outlined a 30-Point Action Plan, which provides for ongoing collaboration in identifying and addressing security risks, while efficiently expediting the legitimate flow of people and goods across the Canada-US border.

Access to Latin America

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) gives you access to the entire continent and entrée to Latin America.  Following the success of the 1988 Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement, in 1994 the original trading partnership expanded to include Mexico . creating the largest free trade area in the world. Products traded with the United States and Mexico fall under the terms of NAFTA and most tariffs were eliminated in 2004. 

NAFTA revealed the true potential for Canada-Mexico-US trade and ushered in a new era of economic integration. Canada and the US remain each other.s largest trading partners. Mexico is now Canada's fourth largest export market, while Canada is Mexico's second largest.

  • The Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor Initiative (APGCI):
  • Take advantage of Canada.s strategic location as the crossroads between the North American marketplace and the booming economies of Asia.

The Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor Initiative (APGCI) is an unprecedented association of public and private sector resources to take advantage of Canada.s strategic location at the crossroads between the North American marketplace and the booming economies of Asia.

This initiative is responding to the huge volume in cargo traffic that is expected to increase constantly with Asia-Pacific countries and China in particular. The significant resources invested in the Gateway and Corridor are increasing Canada.s competitiveness. Specifically, improvements in British Columbia ports and related railroad infrastructure have reduced bottlenecks and helped to swiftly move merchandise to inland and multimodal transportation hubs.

Private sector investment in the gateway and corridor has been an important component of its success. Investors are participating in projects ranging from bridge construction to terminal infrastructure at Canada.s western ports. These investments complement the federal government.s contribution of over $860 million in infrastructure projects worth $2.3 billion located in all four western provinces.

The APGCI provides potential investors with a substantial competitive advantage. In addition, logistical benefits make Canada even more attractive as an investment location.

  • Transportation Advantage: Canada has sophisticated infrastructure and a highly developed transportation network.

Canada is Connected

Bordering three oceans, spanning six time zones and covering 9,970,610 square km (3,849,650 square miles), Canada is the second largest country on earth.  But distance isn.t a deterrent for businesses operating in Canada, thanks to its sophisticated infrastructure and highly developed transportation network.

Here.s Why:

Airports.Canada has 26 airports as part of the national airports system, 726 certified airports that support scheduled and non-scheduled flights, and 1,700 aerodromes that support takeoffs and landings. Toronto is the busiest airport in the country, serving as an east-west hub and handling roughly half of all passenger traffic. Canadian airports processed more than 99 million travellers in 2006 with the number expected to reach over 118 million by 2010. Source: Transport Canada, 2009.

Ports.More than 300 commercial ports and harbours move local and global goods in Canada. The Atlantic, Arctic and Pacific oceans surround Canada.s three coasts.  Canada is also home to the world.s longest inland waterway open to shipping.the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway.the industrial heart of North America. Major international ports include Halifax, Montreal and Vancouver.  Western Canadian ports offer the shortest sailing distance from North America to the Asia-Pacific region, providing a sailing-time advantage of approximately two days over all other locations in the Western Hemisphere.

Rail.Canadian railways handle 270 million metric tones of freight annually, much of it moving between Canada and its NAFTA partners.  The two major carriers in Canada, Canadian Pacific Railway and Canadian National Railways, cover a combined 53,000 kilometres (33,000 miles) from Vancouver to Halifax, Montreal to New Orleans and Calgary to Houston. 

Roads.with nearly 900,000 kilometres of road, Canada has enough transportation infrastructure to circle the Earth 22 times. The Trans Canada Highway, the longest national highway in the world, links all 10 provinces and is fully integrated with the US road network, including 18 major border crossings. Source: Transport Canada, 2009.

To accommodate the phenomenal growth in free trade between Canada and the US, the two countries have developed a shared Action Plan for Creating a Secure and Smart Border to speed up the movement of legitimate travellers and trade.

The busy-friendly features of the Smart Border Accord

  • FAST lanes for pre-approved low-risk commercial traffic opened at Windsor-Detroit, Sarnia-Port Huron, and Fort Erie-Buffalo.
  • Automated permit ports, transponder identification systems and joint processing centres are being tested and deployed.
  • Today, border wait times average less than 10 minutes, one of the most efficient systems in the world.
  • Life Style Advantage: World-class universities, a universally acclaimed health care system, clean, friendly cities and spectacular scenery make Canada a great place to invest, work, live and raise a family.

Invest in Canada. We Mean Business.

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