Expand your business globally with Team Canada Trade Missions

Canadian trade missions have a long and successful history of helping businesses access opportunities in countries around the world. The Trade Commissioner Service has been organizing trade missions for Canadian businesses in one form or another since the 1990s. The earliest ones — including the first one, which took place in China in 1994 — were large prime minister‑led trade missions that promoted Canada and its capabilities abroad, and that also included provincial and territorial premiers.

Similarly, today's Team Canada Trade Missions take a Canada‑wide approach that aims to showcase the broad range of Canadian capabilities and competitiveness with a strong coast‑to‑coast‑to‑coast delegation of businesses, partners and stakeholders.

How will my business benefit from a Team Canada Trade Mission?

TCTMs open doors for Canadian businesses, especially small and medium‑sized enterprises (SMEs). They provide a low‑risk and/or low‑cost market‑entry vehicle for participating SMEs, and a range of other unique opportunities and benefits, such as:

Why are Team Canada Trade Missions important in the way they help businesses export?

TCTMs facilitate the development of deep trade links between Canada and other countries. They're an important instrument for international business development that can be strategically used for:

What’s a typical agenda for a trade mission?

Trade missions generally take place over a one‑week period and involve an average of 1.5 to 2 days in each city, giving participants the chance to immerse themselves in the local business environment.

The structured program may include:

While there's no fee to participate in a trade mission, participants are responsible for covering all of their related travel costs, including airfare, accommodations, ground transportation and meals not included in the program.

How does the Trade Commissioner Service help businesses before, during and after a trade mission?

Trade Commissioners help Canadian businesses at every step of a trade mission.

Before: Trade Commissioners work closely with a service provider or partner to contact the participating business delegates to learn more about their product and/or service, as well as their specific commercial objectives within the local market.

With this valuable insight, Trade Commissioners are able to tailor business‑to‑business meetings and programming, ensuring they're aligned with the participating business's unique needs. As Canadian businesses venture into foreign markets, it's important that they also conduct thorough research and engage in preparatory work to fully take advantage of the opportunities available in the local market.

That includes taking part in a preparatory webinar, hosted by the Trade Commissioner Service, before they arrive in the destination country. This webinar:

The goal is to ensure that delegates can maximize their time and potential on the ground.

During: Throughout the trade mission, Trade Commissioners on the ground proactively facilitate valuable connections for company representatives during networking events, leveraging their extensive networks to forge mutually beneficial relationships. They also ensure business‑to‑business meetings run smoothly and achieve successful results for delegates.

In addition to business‑to‑business meetings, Trade Commissioners organize:

After: After the trade mission, Trade Commissioners continue their engagement with delegates, following up to assess any achievements or milestones reached. Trade missions are not a one‑stop event but rather one tool among others to achieve success in an international market. Many businesses take months or even years to build relationships and secure deals, and participation in a trade mission is one element on this continuum. Trade Commissioners are readily available to provide guidance and support, assisting companies in their export journey.

Want to know more? Visit our Trade missions and events page to stay up to date on upcoming initiatives, including future TCTMS.

Video: Why participate in a trade mission?

Ready to take your business to the world? Learn how businesses like yours can benefit from taking part in a trade mission organized by the Trade Commissioner Service. Visit our YouTube channel for more videos.


Do business with the world
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Jaspreet Grewal, CEO of AxialBridge Inc.:
Trade missions are a vital part of really being a Canadian business. This is a service that not very many countries offer.

Looking to expand into new countries?

Join a Team Canada Trade Mission!
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Nigel Neale, Director, Trade Commissioner Service:
Trade missions led by the minister are high‑impact, low‑risk opportunities for companies to explore a new market.

What are the benefits?
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  • On‑the‑ground support
  • Foreign market intelligence
  • Partnership connections
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Sara Wilshaw, Canada's Chief Trade Commissioner:
You get this really intense period of building a network and getting to know people in the country who might be interested in partnering with you, who might be interested in buying something from you, who might be interested in co-developing something or investing in you.

What do you gain?
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  • Business‑to‑business meetings
  • Site visits
  • Knowledge sessions
  • And much more!
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Yulia Vasilyeva, Founder and CEO of Intelocate:
I think if the company has goals to grow, a trade mission is a great foundation to speed up some of the learnings.
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