By: Angie Mansfield
According to the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Index, Canada is the third easiest country in which to start a business, behind only Hong Kong SAR, China, and Singapore.
For a Mexican or U.S. company looking to expand or move, Canada is a great choice.
1. Ease of Opening
According to The World Bank's Doing Business report, Canada has one of the simplest business startup processes in the world. Opening your business there requires only one procedure, and takes around five days -- one of the quickest turnarounds among nations analyzed in the report.
2. Business Friendly
Another report, KPMG's Guide to International Business Location Costs, showed Canada coming in 5% lower in terms of overall cost of doing business, compared to the United States.
Some costs, such as employee benefits and freight rates, did increase in Canada last year -- but they were offset by lower industrial facility costs and natural gas rates.
Coupled with a very stable banking market (Canada is one of the safest countries in which to invest, according toDun & Bradstreet), this lower cost of doing business makes the country very attractive for businesses.
3. Large Pool of Skilled Workers
Canada has a great education system and many first-class business and engineering schools. This means that the country has a great percentage of degree-holding, skilled employees.
Canada's labor turnover is half that of America, likely due to its unions and its focus on employee and human rights. And the country's high computer literacy rates means a large pool of technology-savvy workers from which companies can draw.
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4. Quality of Life
With excellent literacy rates, education, and income distribution, Canada is one of the most equitable countries in which to live. It's also got a diverse cultural makeup, because of its welcoming attitude toward immigrants and refugees.
In fact, according to theOrganization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Canada ranks third in the world for quality of life. Ranked on factors such as income, housing, jobs, education, health, and life satisfaction, Canada scored high in most categories.
5. Access to North American Market
Perhaps the most important factor on this list, Canada enjoys easy trade with the United States and Mexico, thanks to the North American Free Trade Agreement. Canada and the U.S. are the largest trading partners in the world, thanks to affordable delivery costs between the countries.
Canada presents a great opportunity for North American businesses looking to expand or move operations. Its status as a business-friendly country is set to grow even more in the coming years, as (according to Infrastructure Canada) it focuses on infrastructure projects such as green initiatives, waste management, and transportation -- all programs that represent an opportunity for many small businesses.
Is Canada on your business radar screen?
About the Author: Angie Mansfield is a freelance writer covering topics and people of interest to consumers and small business owners, such as small business management and Steve Wynn.