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Canadians do business in every corner of the globe, but geography alone means that our economic strength always will depend disproportionately on North America. The Business Council of Canada championed the idea of a comprehensive free trade agreement with the United States in the 1980s and subsequently the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The economic success that has flowed from these two initiatives on its own is persuasive evidence that we should continue to build on their foundation.
Asia’s rise is the single most transformative force within the global economy. Rapid urbanization and the expected doubling of the world’s middle class over the next 15 years will have profound consequences. Countries and companies that adapt successfully to these changes can expect to prosper and grow; others will be left behind.
Spearheaded by the Munk School of Global Affairs, the CANASIA Footprint map displays nearly 1200 locations of Canadian companies and organizations in Asia, filtering by sector, country and province. Based on publicly available data, this is a living, evolving map that conveys the extent of Canadian business activities in Asia.
The global economy is evolving. Developing countries, from China to Brazil, are making unprecedented investments in education and training. Countries that were once poor and low-skilled are rapidly moving up the value chain, producing increasing numbers of highly educated workers.
Succeeding and prospering in the 21st century will require a broad national effort to strengthen Canada’s human capital advantage. In 2013, the Business Council launched Taking Action for Canada: Jobs and Skills for the 21st century. Since then, the Council has continued its work on ensuring Canada can be home to the world’s most dynamic and innovative workforce.
The Business Council works closely with a number of organizations that share our commitment to shaping public policy in the interests of a stronger Canada and a better world.