We support Canadian businesses by leveraging a whole-of-government approach to international trade.
The Government of Canada’s International Trade Portfolio includes CCC, Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and Export Development Canada. CCC consistently leverages a whole-of-government approach to international trade by collaborating with its International Trade Portfolio partners and other key government partners to deliver greater support and value to Canadian exporters.
Diplomatic and trade relations
Global Affairs Canada (GAC)
Global Affairs Canada (GAC) manages Canada’s diplomatic, consular and trade relations, to encourage the country’s international trade and to lead Canada’s international development and humanitarian assistance. Services for Canadian exporters include:
- Strengthening trading arrangements and expanding free and fair market access at bilateral, regional and global levels;
- Working with a range of partners inside and outside government to achieve increased economic opportunity and enhanced security for Canada and for Canadians at home and abroad;
- Managing Canada’s support and resources effectively and accountably to achieve meaningful, sustainable international development and humanitarian results;
- Providing funding and support programs for Canadians doing international business
Trade Commissioner Service (TCS)
The Trade Commissioner Service helps Canadian companies navigate international markets, including selling to the U.S. government. TCS has trade commissioners around the world and plenty of online resources to help you find answers. If you are new to exporting, take a look at TCS’ Step-by-Step guide to exporting. To find a trade commissioner near you in Canada, use Find a Trade Commissioner. To get more information and insights on business opportunities that match your specific business interest, go to MyTCS .
Agri-Food Trade Service (ATS)
Offered by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, this service is designed to support Canadian food industry and businesses reach international markets. The program helps Canadian businesses find the markets with the most potential for their business, address market access issues or barriers that could block products from reaching foreign markets, promote products at key international trade shows, use the Canada Brand program to market Canadian food products and leverage the agency’s international network of Trade Commissioners and in-market experts.
Canadian Business Women in International Trade (BWIT)
BWIT program offers support to women entrepreneurs or business owners on minimizing the challenges that come with exporting into new and unfamiliar markets, as well as facilitate connections with various networks domestically and abroad. Through our wide range of programs and services, you can take advantage of opportunities for networking to leverage your exporting objectives. Some of BWIT’s services include: website, LinkedIn group, annual and monthly newsletter, women-focused trade missions, information about networking events and webinars.
Funding and financing
Export Development Canada (EDC)
EDC is Canada’s export credit agency. EDC provides insurance and financial services, bonding products and small business solutions to Canadian exporters and investors and their international buyers. EDC also support Canadian direct investment abroad and investment into Canada. Much of their business is done in partnership with other financial institutions and through collaboration with the government of Canada.
EDC also offers export insights through its Export Help Hub, an online portal that gives unlimited access to EDC’s international insights, webinars, and guides. To access the portal, register for your free MyEDC account.
The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC)
BDC finances working capital to expand their businesses and invest in technology. They also lend money to purchase commercial real estate, buy new or used equipment, and a variety of other business needs. BDC works in partnership with other financial institutions and they offer the following services: business loans, advisory services,
CanExport SMEs provides up to $50,000 to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) registered in Canada for international business development activities. The program helps develop export opportunities for products and services in new international markets. The program focuses on export marketing activities of existing products and services in foreign markets.
CanExport SMEs supports exploratory activities as well as activities that contribute toward a longer-term strategy for internationalization. Companies may opt for a multi-year project, or submit a new application to build upon a previous project.
Sustainable Development Technology Canada
Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) helps Canadian start-ups or scale-ups develop and deploy competitive, clean technology solutions. SDTC is accountable to Parliament through the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED).
SDTC looks for projects where the technology is beyond proof-of-concept stage but is pre-commercial. The technology must demonstrate the potential for greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions reductions, reductions in water consumption and/or the reduction of water, soil or air contamination. The project must also include some further development of the technology, mitigate existing technology risk and include validation of the economic viability of the technology.
SDTC will cover a percentage of eligible project costs but the project must have private sector contributions (including in-kind). Funding from all levels of government must not surpass 75 percent of eligible costs and at least 50 percent of eligible project costs must be incurred in Canada.
Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP)
The National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) provides advice, connections, and funding to help Canadian small and medium-sized businesses increase their innovation capacity and take ideas to market.
NRC IRAP funds research and development (R&D) projects at various stages of the innovation cycle. The program includes support for larger R&D projects (up to $10 million) which is targeted toward firms that will have demonstrated to the program the ability to grow rapidly and significantly.
Canadian Technology Accelerators (CTAs)
The Canadian Technology Accelerator (CTA) offers high-intensity programming that helps selected high-growth, high-potential Canadian technology firms scale up by connecting them with export, investment and partnership opportunities in global innovation centres. Over the course of a four- to six-month program, CTA participants are provided with tailored support ranging from in-market working space and coaching to market validation and introductions to potential partners, clients and investors.
Other programs and resources
Canada Business Network
The Canada Business Network is a government information site for businesses and start-up entrepreneurs in Canada. It offers a wealth of information including how to get financing, export, sell to the federal government and more. It also offers information about taxation, permits, licenses, regulations, managing intellectual property and copyright and more.
Export Controls Online
Export Controls On-Line (EXCOL) is a web-based application that allows exporters to submit applications on-line for export permits and certificates, as well as request amendments. EXCOL also offers the functionality to submit online quarterly utilization reports for military goods, as well as the ability to print selected permits in your office.
Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) Canada
(ISED) works with Canadians in all areas of the economy and in all parts of the country to improve conditions for investment, enhance Canada’s innovation performance, increase Canada’s share of global trade and build a fair, efficient and competitive marketplace. The agency offers over 40 programs including: Accelerated Growth Service, Black Entrepreneurship Program, Canada Small Business Financing Program, Clean Growth Hub, Innovation Superclusters Initiative, Innovative Solutions Canada, Strategic Innovation Fund and Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub
U.S. Commercial Service
The U.S. Commercial Service (CS), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration amd offers a range of useful research tools, including market reports and commercial guides related to world markets.
Clean Growth Hub
The Clean Growth Hub is an inter-departmental initiative, made up of 17 federal government departments and agencies that support clean tech innovation. The Hub’s team of experts provides advice and connections regarding regulatory, standards, government procurement, and skills and training matters; and helps connect companies to international markets. It also facilitates connections and behind-the-scenes coordination between programs.
Accelerated Growth Service
The Accelerated Growth Service (AGS) helps entrepreneurs and businesses access the support they need to grow and scale. If you’re established and growing fast, or a start‑up with a lot of potential – the AGS innovation advisors can help you find, and take advantage of, everything that government can do for you – from research support to financing to foreign market expertise. Services offered include free, expert support and advice on how to grow, meet your goals and pitch your business.
Indigenous Services Canada
Helps Aboriginal communities get the most from their economic development potential by providing access to capital, and business opportunities. The Strategic Partnerships Initiative helps Indigenous communities participate in complex economic opportunities.
Statistics Canada (StatCan) is Canada’s central statistical agency produces statistics and statistical reports on Canada’s population, resources, economy, society and culture. My StatCan is a portal that allows you to: bookmark and quickly access your favourite articles, reports, data tables and indicators.
Want more international business resources?
Here is how we and other partners can help you grow your business abroad.