Trading with the World
The Board is proud to play a vital role in elevating the public presence and global competitiveness of Canada’s largest urban centre beyond the city-region’s geographic borders. Now more than ever we have dedicated supports and services available to our businesses in their quest to successfully grow their global reach.
World Trade Center Re-activation and Partnership
Our core pillar of trade will be further advanced through the re-activation of the World Trade Center to provide a focus on trade-related services to local businesses, and manage the future work of our TAP-GTA. As a member of the World Trade Center Association, led from New York, the WTC Toronto will partner with the more than 320 members worldwide to provide research, business connections and advice to the Toronto region’s exporters.
The Toronto Region Board of Trade’s unique Trade Accelerator Program (TAP) GTA initiative, launched late 2015, was set up to help small and medium-sized businesses with key resources to build their international business presence. In the past year, this intensive, hands-on, collaborative initiative has emerged as something much greater than imagined. As of September 2016, 35% of the 20 companies who went through the TAP mentoring process between the test launch and fiscal 2016, have experienced notable successes in increased international sales, jobs and/or establishment of foreign contracts. The number of companies enrolling in the program is accelerating steadily; we expect a minimum of 100 Toronto region companies to benefit from it in the next year, as we also heed calls to expand TAP into additional City-regions for the benefit of all future Canadian exporters.
Hong Kong: The Super-Connector
The Board, along with the support of HKCBA, Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (Toronto) and InvestHK, brought together Dr. Simon Galpin, Director – General, Invest Hong Kong and Prof. Tony Chan, President, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology to discuss how Hong Kong is a super-connector for business, investments, talent and technology.
Unleashing Hong Kong / Asia Potential for Canadian Business
As a part of the Scotiabank International Finance Series and in partnership with HKTDC the Board brought together Gloria Lo, Director, Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Canada and Andrew Yui, Director, Canada Hong Kong Trade Development Council, to showcase Hong Kong as a gateway for Canadian companies (particularly SMEs) to do business in Asia.
Joint Asia Mission
We know that becoming more connected makes us more competitive. After much preparation, in April, the Board was pleased to join Mayor John Tory and 26 delegates to co-lead a highly productive trade mission to China, the world’s largest consumer market, and the high-growth markets of Hong Kong and Japan. Together with City Councillors, academic and business leaders, we facilitated critical face-to-face trade connections, promoted Toronto businesses and institutions within some of Asia’s most populous Metropolitan regions, and discussed the Toronto region’s benefits with major corporations. The Board has inputted the feedback from this successful mission into our current preparations in support of our members at upcoming trade missions to emerging and high-growth markets, including China, Dubai and Israel.
“We worked closely with the Board on transit and other infrastructure issues that affect our members and their clients – and taking part in the Board’s roundtable session with the Mayor’s Advisory Panel on the City of Toronto’s Global Event strategy was particularly valuable. Our staff also take advantage of Board events and seminars because of the vast networking and professional development opportunities they provide.”