Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade Boosts Business and Trade Opportunities for Ontario

Todd Smith, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, completed a business mission to India on behalf of the Government of Ontario. Over the course of six days, Smith met with various businesses, investors and stakeholders across the agri-food, automotive, infrastructure, information and technology, and education sectors in New Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai to promote Ontario as a premier destination to invest and do business with.

“Our government's number-one priority is to ensure that Ontario is open for business and open for jobs,” said Smith. “India represents the world's seventh largest economy and boasts a population of 1.3 billion people. As one of the fastest growing economies in the world, there are numerous investment, skill development and export opportunities for Ontario.”

During the business mission, Smith brought Ontario's open for business, open for jobs message to business leaders across sectors that demonstrate a high degree of trade and investment potential for Ontario. Some highlights from the mission:

  • Ontario's considerable agri-food industry puts Canada on the map as the fifth largest agricultural exporter in the world. Benefiting from a “Made in Canada” brand advantage that has become synonymous with high quality standards and food safety, Smith met with Hygge Energy, Sabran Bioentrri and Advanced Enzymes to promote Ontario's agri-food industry.
  • The Indian automotive sector has the potential to generate up to US$300 billion in annual revenue by 2026. Smith explored opportunities to promote Ontario's auto industry, solid innovation ecosystem, substantial research and development initiatives and ability to deliver top quality auto parts at highly competitive prices with Mahindra & Mahindra, Hero, Tata, Mahindra Tractors and Aditya Birla Carbon to help diversify Ontario's market reach.
  • With hundreds of planned infrastructure projects on the horizon, India can benefit from Ontario's internationally recognized construction and technology design that meet some of the world's toughest performance and quality standards. Smith met with Larsen and Toubro to identify ways Ontario construction companies can partner on these projects.
  • India's information and technology sector is set to reach US$350 billion by 2025, making it the largest sourcing destination for IT. Ontario, home to one of North America's largest financial services sectors, world-class technology industries and highly-skilled workforce make it an ideal location for partnerships in life sciences, Artificial Intelligence and financial technologies. While in India, Smith met with over 20 startups, as well as Turning Ideas, Alacrity India Innovation Centre, Infosys and Nasscom to explore business opportunities between Ontario and India.
  • The Skill India campaign seeks to train over 500 million people in India with a diverse range of skills by 2020. Meeting with key Indian stakeholders, including companies, government and educational institutions, Smith promoted Ontario's open for jobs environment where colleges and universities partner with companies to ensure employability and explored opportunities for future collaboration.
  • Minister Smith also brought the open for business message to Reliance, a company in the mining, petrochemicals and retail space, HDFC Bank and the Indo-Canadian Business Chamber.

Promoting the province as an attractive jurisdiction for investment in key international markets will increase business opportunities that lead to job creation. By diversifying Ontario's global trading partners and exports, the government of Ontario is creating a climate conducive for business and economic growth.

“I look forward to continuing a long and prosperous partnership between Ontario and India,” said Smith. “Businesses choose the place that will offer them the best conditions to grow. This week I delivered the message that Ontario is that place.”

Quick Facts

  • Ontario’s jobs are the most export reliant in Canada with 1 in 5 workers, or 1.3 million people, dependent on exports.
  • Ontario maintains a network of Trade and Investment Offices located around the globe to strengthen the province’s international trade capacity by helping Ontario small- and medium-sized businesses access opportunities in key markets.
  • There are approximately 60 Indian companies across all sectors that have operations and investments in Ontario.
  • Approximately 830,000 Ontarians are of Indian origin.
  • There were around 21,000 Indian postsecondary students in Ontario in the 2016/2017 school year.
  • More than 171,000 Indian tourists visited Ontario in 2018.