USMCA is good for Canada and good for small business, Minister Ng tells audience in Guelph 

News release

October 26, 2018 – Guelph, Ontario

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is a modernized North American free trade agreement that is good for Canada and good for Canadians. It is the result of Canada’s resolve at the negotiation table and focus on getting the job done.

To promote the benefits and opportunities of the USMCA, the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion, visited Guelph, Ontario, today. She spoke at the Downtown Guelph Business Association and participated in roundtable discussion on the importance of the USMCA as an engine of growth and prosperity for Ontario.

Minister Ng stressed that the announcement of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement was an important step forward for North American trade, reinforcing strong economic ties between the three countries, reaffirming certainty in our long-standing trade relationship, and fostering good, well-paying jobs for Canadians.

Canada is the only G7 country to have trade agreements with all G7 countries. When implemented, the USMCA will help Canadians compete globally and prosper in a healthy, integrated North American economy.

The Government of Canada continues to engage with North American partners to finalize the details of an agreement that will benefit all Canadians, including small businesses.


“As a small-business-friendly government, we’re working hard to make it easier for Canadians to do business here at home and abroad. The world wants to buy Canadian goods and services, and the USMCA supports opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses to access the North American market. By supporting small businesses in their efforts to export, we’re helping strengthen the economy and grow the middle class.”

– The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion

“The USMCA is good for Canada’s economy and good for Canada’s middle-class workers and families. It addresses modern-day trade issues and supports prosperity for Canadians by ensuring that our businesses, entrepreneurs, workers, ranchers, farmers and fishers continue to have preferential access to our largest market.”

– The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs

Quick facts

  • Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) account for the vast majority of businesses in Canada—99.8%. These 1.1 million SMEs employ 90% of the private sector workforce (10.7 million Canadians) and are responsible for 52% of Canadian GDP generated by private sector businesses.

  • On average, SMEs that export pay higher wages than firms that do not export; however, only 12% of Canadian SMEs export. 

  • Canada and the United States share the world’s longest secure border, over which approximately 400,000 people, and goods and services worth $2.4 billion, cross daily.

  • Canada and the United States have one of the largest trading relationships in the world. Canada is the largest market for the United States—larger than China, Japan and the United Kingdom combined.

  • The globally competitive regional market created under the original NAFTA in 1994 today accounts for nearly 486 million consumers and a combined GDP of more than US$22 trillion.

  • In 2017, trilateral trade reached nearly US$1.1 trillion—a more than threefold increase since 1993.

  • The United States and Mexico are Canada’s first- and third-largest merchandise trading partners in the world, respectively.

  • Canada is the second- and fifth-largest merchandise trading partner of the United States and Mexico, respectively, and the largest export market for the United States.

  • To reach this renewed trilateral trade understanding, the Prime Minister, ministers, parliamentarians, federal officials, premiers and industry representatives directly engaged political and business leaders in the United States to advocate on behalf of Canadians.

  • Since January 2016, “Team Canada” visited the United States more than 300 times and made more than 500 individual contacts with American officials, including the President, the Vice-President, 16 United States Cabinet members, more than 310 members of Congress, and 60 governors and lieutenant governors.

  • To help guide negotiations, the Government of Canada consulted with Canadians from across the country and from all sectors and backgrounds about trade. Consultations included meetings with the provinces and territories, industry, unions, civil society, think tanks, academics, Indigenous peoples, women, youth and the general public.

Associated links


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Mallory Clyne
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada

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