Industry Canada

Industry Canada

December 12, 2014 15:06 ET

Strengthening Free Trade in Canada: Harper Government Delivers on Commitment to Develop Internal Trade Barrier Index

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Dec. 12, 2014) - Industry Canada

Barriers that restrict trade between provinces and territories harm Canada's national economy and hurt businesses, workers and consumers.

To continue the push to break down barriers to internal trade, the Harper Government committed to developing an Internal Trade Barrier Index to identify priority areas for action. Today, Industry Minister James Moore announced that Ernst & Young has been awarded the contract to develop this index, delivering on the Government of Canada's Economic Action Plan 2014 commitment.

The index will play a key role in identifying measures that currently restrict trade within Canada. It will also provide a clear understanding of areas where governments, business and organizations should focus reforms and policy efforts to make it easier for goods to flow across Canada.

During the development of the Internal Trade Barriers Index, Ernst & Young will engage businesses and consumers on significant barriers and their economic impact. The index is another important step the Harper Government is taking to modernize internal trade and free Canadian businesses, workers and consumers from the barriers that limit their success, movement and choice.

Quick facts

  • The Government has taken action to promote economic growth by increasing Canada's openness to trade and investment, providing tax relief, improving the regulatory environment, promoting business competitiveness and strengthening the financial sector.
  • When the Agreement on Internal Trade came into effect nearly 20 years ago, Canada had concluded trade agreements with only two countries. Today, we have agreements in force or being finalized with 43 countries, giving Canadian businesses preferential access to over 1.1 billion consumers worldwide.
  • Nearly 40 percent of Canada's trade occurs within its borders.
  • The Agreement on Internal Trade is an intergovernmental accord on trade within Canada focused on eliminating barriers to establish an open, efficient and stable domestic market.
  • On August 20, 2014, Minister Moore unveiled One Canada, One National Economy: Modernizing Internal Trade in Canada, which outlines a potential approach for federal, provincial and territorial partners to advance a modern internal trade framework.


"The Internal Trade Barrier Index is an important step forward as we work to liberalize trade within Canada. The index will generate valuable information about trade barriers that affect every region across Canada. I look forward to working with my provincial and territorial colleagues to free trade within Canada."

- James Moore, Minister of Industry

"At EY we are committed to building a better working world, and that includes fostering growth and helping businesses succeed both at home and abroad. We look forward to hearing from Canadian businesses and consumers to gain a strong understanding of the barriers that hinder their progress and choice."

- Trent Henry, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Ernst & Young LLP

"Barriers to trade among provinces create particular difficulties for small businesses across Canada. One of the greatest challenges to action is the subtle nature of the regulatory differences that are at the heart of such barriers. The Internal Trade Barrier Index will be an important step in shining the light on the problems and developing lasting solutions."

- Dan Kelly, President and Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Federation of Independent Business

Follow @industrycanada on Twitter and use #internaltrade to let us know how internal trade is affecting your business.

Contact Information

  • Jake Enwright
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Minister of Industry

    Media Relations
    Industry Canada