Recognizing the massive opportunity of Canada’s largest trade deal ever offering market access to a European Union population of 500 million people, this week the Consider Canada City Alliance Inc., which includes Montréal International, is on a three-city EU investment mission in support of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). The European Commission estimates CETA could boost bilateral trade between Canada and the EU by 23%, or CDN$37.7 billion.
Formally incorporated in 2012, the 11 member cities of the Consider Canada City Alliance represent 54% of Canada’s population, 56% of Canada’s employment, 59% of its GDP, and between 2007 and 2012, 72% of GDP growth and 90% of jobs growth. This week’s investment mission to Amsterdam, Madrid and Milan will emphasize match-making sessions between European companies, significant private investors and economic development executives from Canada’s major cities. Canadian investment seminars will detail major growth opportunities in infrastructure innovation and services, advanced manufacturing and sustainable technology.
“Canada is enjoying an infrastructure super-cycle,” said Bruce Graham, Chairman of the Consider Canada City Alliance and President and CEO of Calgary Economic Development. “The Canadian Manufacturing and Exporters (CME) estimates that private energy and mining-related projects added to public infrastructure projects over the next five years will be valued at a minimum of $350 billion.”
“To build out these huge projects, Canadian cities need help from European engineering services firms, architecture firms, advanced manufacturing tool companies, financial and transportation companies,” stated Graham.
In an article entitled “Canada doesn’t get any sexier than this”, The Economist magazine pointed out that fully 70% of “rich-world GDP” is in services of the type found in and required by Canada’s large cities. CETA, stated The Economist, “takes a crack at liberalising cross-border investment and trade in services in ways that previous trade negotiations have rarely attempted. CETA would open competition for large government contracts in Canada to European firms, and grant Canadians more access to Europe’s $2.6 trillion procurement market.”
As European corporate and family investment arms set their sites on CETA-related trade opportunity, they are also expressing a strong interest in investing in Canadian companies in the renewable energy, information and communication technology, food processing, pharmaceuticals and natural medicine, and advanced manufacturing sectors. Through the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), European investors now have access to an economy with a total output of $18.6 trillion and a population of 460 million consumers.
“European demand for Canada’s natural resources is accompanied by similar demand for innovation, and we are showcasing more than 150 investment targets from Canada’s large cities during this EU trade mission,” said Michael Darch, President of the Consider Canada City Alliance. “This week we have scheduled more than 200 one-on-one meetings with European investors looking to expand into Canada.”
18 representatives from 10 Canadian cities including Toronto, Montréal, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax, Québec City, Winnipeg, Waterloo Region and Saskatoon are participating in the three-city EU investment mission to Amsterdam, Milan and Madrid. They are working closely with partners from Invest in Canada and the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD), and European partners including the Spanish Confederation of Employers’ Organizations, the FD Mediagroep in the Netherlands and Confindustria in Italy.
About the Consider Canada City Alliance
As a united front, Canada’s large cities – Toronto, Montréal, Vancouver, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax, Québec City, Winnipeg, Waterloo Region and Saskatoon – help international companies determine the best strategies for business expansion and continually improve Canada’s ability to attract new investment and trade opportunities. For more information on the Consider Canada City Alliance, please go to www.considercanada.com or www.canadaentete.com.