Bay Street (Financial District), Toronto, Ontario
Toronto Financial District
Canada is one of the world's wealthiest nations, with a high per-capita income, and it is a member of the Organisatio n for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the G8. It is one of the world's top ten trading nations. Canada is a mixed market, ranking lower than the U.S. on the Heritage Foundation's index of economic freedom but higher than most western European nations. The largest foreign importers of Canadian goods are the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan. In 2008, Canada's imported goods were worth over $442.9 billion, of which $280.8 billion was from the United States, $11.7 billion from Japan, and $11.3 billion from the United Kingdom. As of October 2009, Canada's national unemployment rate was 8.6%. Provincial unemployment rates vary from a low of 5.8% in Manitoba to a high of 17% in Newfoundland and Labrador. As of 2008, Canadas total government debt burden is the lowest among the G8. The OECD projects that Canada's debt-to-GDP ratio will decline to 19.5% in 2009, which is less than half of the projected average of 51.9% for all G8 countries. According to these projections, Canada's debt burden will have fallen by more than 50 percentage points from its peak in 1995, when it was the second-highest in the G8. In 200809, the federal debt increased by $6.1 billion to $463.7 billion. In the past century, the growth of the manufacturing, mining, and service sectors has transformed the nation from a largely rural economy to a more industrial and urban one. Like other First World nations, the Canadian economy is dominated by the service industry, which employs about three quarters of Canadians. Canada is unusual among developed countries in the importance of its primary sector, in which the logging and petroleum industries are two of the most important. Canada is one of the few developed nations that are net exporters of energy. Atlantic Canada has vast offshore deposits of natural gas, and Alberta has large oil and gas resources. The immense Athabasca Oil Sands give Canada the world's second-largest oil reserves, behind Saudi Arabia. Canada is one of the world's largest suppliers of agricultural products; the Canadian Prairies are one of the most important producers of wheat, canola, and other grains. Canada is the largest producer of zinc and uranium, and is a global source of many other natural resources, such as gold, nickel, aluminium, and lead. Many towns in northern Canada, where agriculture is difficult, are sustainable because of nearby mines or sources of timber. Canada also has a sizable manufacturing sector centred in southern Ontario and Quebec, with automobiles and aeronautics representing particularly important industries. Representatives of the Canadian, Mexican, and United States governments sign the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1992. Economic integration with the United States has increased significantly since World War II. This has drawn the attention of Canadian nationalists, who are concerned about cultural and economic autonomy in an age of globalization, as American goods and media products have become ubiquitous. The Automotive Products Trade Agreement of 1965 opened the borders to trade in the auto manufacturing industry. In the 1970s, concerns over energy self-sufficiency and foreign ownership in the manufacturing sectors prompted Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau's Liberal government to enact the National Energy Program (NEP) and the Foreign Investment Review Agency (FIRA). In the 1980s, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney's Progressive Conservatives abolished the NEP and changed the name of FIRA to "Investment Canada" in order to encourage foreign investment. The Canada United States Free Trade Agreement (FTA) of 1988 eliminated tariffs between the two countries, while the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) expanded the free-trade zone to include Mexico in the 1990s. In the mid-1990s, the Liberal government under Jean Chrétien began to post annual budgetary surpluses and steadily paid down the national debt. The 2008 global financial crisis caused a recession, which could boost the country's unemployment rate to 10%. Canadian culture has historically been influenced by British, French, and Aboriginal cultures and traditions. It has also been heavily influenced by American culture because of its proximity and the high rate of migration between the two countries. The great majority of English-speaking immigrants to Canada between 1755 and 1815 were Americans from the Thirteen Colonies. During and immediately after the War of Independence, 46,000 American Loyalists came to Canada. Between 1785 and 1812, the Late Loyalists emigrated to Canada in response to promises of land.
Business in Canada
Canada is America's largest trading partner. More than 80% of industrialized goods made in Canada are exported to U.S.A 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 advantageous 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. Tax Advantage The World Trade Magazine has ranked Canada in the Top 3 for Investment and Trade Opportunities. 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 18 percent in 2010 to 15 percent in 2012 - less than half of the U.S. rate.