Backgrounder — Minister Joly Announces Her Intention to Lead Canada’s First Creative Industries Trade Mission to China in April 2018


The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, has announced her intention to lead Canada’s first creative industries trade mission to China in April 2018. Canadian artists, entrepreneurs, creators and business owners from creative sectors (music, books, audio-visual, visual arts, performing arts and new technologies, among others) are thriving on the international scene. The creative industries trade mission will support businesses and organizations in the creative industry who are looking to further new partnerships and build business-to-business relationships in China.

Mission objectives

  • Facilitate market entry for high-potential SMEs that are export-ready and have an ability to enter the Chinese market.
  • Establish new partnerships between Canada and China’s creators and creative entrepreneurs.
  • Create opportunities to learn from Canadian companies who have achieved success in the Chinese market and leverage their networks.
  • Promote Canada as an investment partner and destination.
  • Strengthen cultural and economic relationships between Canada and China.

Targeted sectors                                                                                                            

The creative industries trade mission is aiming to leverage existing networks, play to Canada’s strengths and complement the Chinese market. The following four sectors may be targeted for the recruitment of candidates (but are not limited to):

  • film/audio-visual (including animation and visual effects);
  • video games and virtual reality/augmented reality (VR/AR);
  • digital content for public/creative spaces/museums; and
  • performing arts.

Who should participate?

There is a growing demand for creative and cultural products and services in China. However, China remains a complex business environment, which can present unique challenges. Strong candidates for this trade mission include Canadian businesses and organizations with export experience, high potential, and readiness for the Chinese market.

Selection criteria

The following criteria will be considered when selecting applicants:

  • Operations in one of the above-mentioned targeted sectors;
  • Experience targeting China as part of their international business strategy, either to export, establish a presence in the country or to seek investment capital;
  • Candidates that are already negotiating with Chinese companies, and could benefit from a Minister-led trade mission to facilitate new partnerships;
  • Those that have not yet entered the Chinese market but demonstrate a strong interest, potential and readiness to be introduced to the market and key stakeholders;
  • Candidates that would benefit from mentoring opportunities with the Trade Commissioner Service as well as with companies that have already achieved success in China.

In collaboration with its partners from the industry, portfolio organizations or other government departments, the Department of Canadian Heritage will assess candidates’ suitability for participation, based on the criteria and the mission’s objectives.

Program and itinerary

The business program will include: business briefings, pre-arranged business-to-business meetings tailored to participants’ needs, networking events and some overarching programming elements with the Minister.

Mentoring activities could be included, by pairing Canadian companies already established in China with smaller, high-potential companies that show readiness and have a strong interest in entering the Chinese market.

The mission’s itinerary will be developed to include Beijing, as well as other Chinese cities, to maximize opportunities for Canadian creative industries.

Confirmed participants will be expected to make their own respective travel arrangements using identified reservation blocks as provided.

Express interest

If you are interested in applying to be part of the creative industries trade mission delegation, an initial expression of interest would be appreciated by November 13, 2017. Please send an email to

Additional updates on mission planning will be made available on the trade mission’s web page at 2018 Creative Industries Trade Mission to China.

Page details

Date modified: