Doing Business with China

Government-to-government agreements will open the door to valuable opportunities for Canadian businesses like yours.

The strong people-to-people ties that exist between Canada and China provide natural linkages to spur commercial ties: over 1.3 million Canadian residents are of Chinese origin, and more than 68,000 Chinese students are enrolled in Canadian educational institutions.

With a growing population, GDP per capita and infrastructure requirements, China represents tremendous opportunities for Canadian exporters and investors. China has already emerged as Canada’s second-largest two-way trading partner, second-largest source of merchandise imports and third-largest merchandise export market.

Government-to-government agreements between Canada and China can help Canadian companies further realize the great potential of this market. The two governments welcomed the release in August 2012 of the Economic Complementarities Study, which highlighted the potential to increase commercial relations through appropriate government-to-government instruments. The results of this study are being reviewed by both sides.

The Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA), which was signed in September 2012, contains reciprocally binding rules that will provide Canadian investors and their investments in China with greater protection and predictability.

Once implemented, the Canada-China FIPA will enable investors from both countries to invest in each other’s markets with greater confidence. The FIPA is also expected to support Canadian businesses’ efforts to take advantage of the growing investment opportunities in a variety of China’s industry sectors, including financial services, natural resources, transportation, biotechnology, education, information technology and manufacturing. These investments will help create jobs and prosperity in both countries.

During Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s visit to China in February 2012, additional progress was announced on measures to facilitate trade and investment between the two countries. These advances included those in the areas of nuclear cooperation, energy cooperation, air transportation, and science and technology, which are already opening the door to enhanced Canada-China commercial relations.

  • In 2011, two-way merchandise trade between Canada and China reached $65 billion.
  • Also in 2011, Canadian investment in China reached $4.5 billion, while Chinese investment in Canada amounted to $10.9 billion.

For more information about new business opportunities or how the Canada-China FIPA or other government-to-government agreements can help your company in China, check out market facts and reports for China on the Trade Commissioner Service website or contact a trade commissioner.

Additional Information

Contact Us

Trade Policy and Negotiations Division I (TPE)
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
Lester B. Pearson Building
125 Sussex Drive, Ottawa ON  K1A 0G2
Fax: 613-944-0757