• Canada Business Network : Thanks to Canada Business Network, you have access to a wealth of useful and relevant information that will help you in your market development. You will find interesting links for market research, sources of financing to support you in your exports, export rules and regulations, and strategic advice concerning sales, marketing and logistics.
  • Global Affairs Canada : Here you will find information on various trade agreements ratified by Canada, on markets by industrial sectors and by region/country, several tools to guide you in your export ventures… You also have access to The Canadian Trade Commissioner Service present in more than 150 countries and each province of Canada. Trade Commissioners can help you achieve your business/trade goals within international markets.
  • Export Québec : A department within the Quebec Ministry of Economy, Science and Innovation, Export Québec and its Advisors will help you and accompany you in the development of your international markets. On this Web Site, you will find useful information about the countries you are targeting, Export Assistance Programs as well as relevant tools to help you master your international market development.
  • Export Development Canada (EDC) : You will find here information on several countries (their economies, business and trade environment, key sectors to be developed), “Doing Business” Guides in selected countries, in-depth analyzes of trade trends as well as multiple webinars.
  • The World Bank : The World Bank Group is one of the main sources of financing and know-how for developing countries. The World Bank Web Site is loaded with socio-demographic and financial data encompassing more than 100 countries. Furthermore, it also oversees the Doing Business Project which measures business claims and ventures in 190 economies. There is also a ranking of countries within which it is good to do business and their respective economic data.

A credit insurance protects you against the risks of non-payment by your international customers as well as by your local clients. This allows you to ensure that your invoices will be paid and helps you to manage trade and political risks.

There are different organizations specialized in international credit insurance, namely:

Exporting goods into a foreign market is not a right but a privilege that necessitates compliance with the requirements of the targeted country. This is why it is important to know what these requirements are to ensure that your products are not blocked by customs authorities.

 Harmonized System and Customs Tariffs

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HS) (generally referred to as “Harmonized System” or simply “HS”) is the very basis of customs tariffs. Developed by the World Trade Organization (WTO), the HS consists of a standardized coding structure and descriptions of related products used for international trade. This multipurpose international product nomenclature, used in any customs transaction, determines the customs duties to be applied over various products and the collection of statistics used to negotiate a free trade agreement such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Depending on the country in which you are exporting your products, the buyer may be charged with customs duties following the import of your merchandise. By knowing the applicable customs duties, you will be able to calculate your export price accordingly and adjust your pricing strategy in order to be more competitive with the buyer.

For this reason, it is crucial to know exactly the HS Code of your product.

Depending on the legislation in force within a given country, a potential buyer may be charged with customs duties on the import of your products, which may have an impact on his purchase decision. Therefore, by knowing in advance the fees to be paid according to the targeted market, you will be able to adapt your pricing strategy or your services offer and determine the markets where you are more competitive.

Knowing the HS (Harmonized System) Code of your product is critical for finding information on foreign country tariffs.

The following resources will help you determine your HS Code. As the understanding of this multipurpose international product nomenclature is complex, we can refer you to a Customs Broker, namely:

  • Use a currency converter to know the current rate of your transactions.
  • Do not forget that your business partner is operating on another time zone !
  • According to a recent study conducted by the Business Development Bank of Canada, prosperous exporters identified six strategies as the most effective ones for their international growth. Participation in trade fairs is one of the keys to successful export ventures. Hereafter are several sources that will allow you to find an international trade fair:
  • Evaluate the risks of doing business in a country through the corruption index.
  • If your product relies primarily on your intellectual property, be sure to check the level of intellectual property protection before doing business within a specific country.
  • Discover the export map developed by Google Canada and Canada Economic Development that gathers relevant information from Canada’s top 10 business partners.
  • Obtain free of charge the Step-by-Step Guide to Exporting designed by the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service for access to a wealth of practical information that will help you in your international business development.