Small Business BC

How to Finance Your Growing Export Business

In Canada, there are programs and associations that support and promote exporting by offering financial assistance. For more information on these programs, visit the Trade Commissioner’s website, and follow the links provided.

Global Opportunities for Associations (GOA)

Formerly known as the Program for Export Market Development - Associations (PEMD-A), this program provides contribution funding to support national associations undertaking new or expanded international business development activities, in strategic markets and sectors, for the benefit of an entire industry (member and non-member firms).

Invest Canada - Community Initiatives (ICCI)

This program helps Canadian communities attract, retain, and expand foreign direct investment. ICCI also provides matching funds of up to 50% of eligible project costs per year, for a total contribution not to exceed $300,000 per project per year.

Going Global - Innovation (GGI)

The Going Global program is for those who are either: 

  • A Canadian company or researcher
  • Wanting to work with a foreign partner, or 
  • Looking to solidify an international partnership for future R&D collaboration

The objective of Going Global is to “promote and enhance Canada's international innovation efforts by supporting Canadian companies and/or researchers in pursuing international R&D collaborative opportunities through the development of partnerships with key players in other countries/economies.”

International Science and Technology Partnerships Program (ISTPP)

The ISTPP program was announced by the Government of Canada in June 2005 to promote international collaborative R&D activities. The 5-year, $20 million program will increase the international competitiveness and prosperity of Canada by building stronger science and technology relationships with Israel, India, China, and Brazil.

Export Banks

In addition to grants, financing is available through various banks that support exporting, including:

  • Export Development Canada (EDC) offers funding programs including accounts receivable insurance, pre-shipment financing, C-TPAT financing (Customs – Trade Partnership Against Terrorism), and buyer financing.
  • NorthStar Finance complements EDC's export financing services by financing export sales of between $100,000 and $5 million, with repayment terms of one to five years.
  • Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) offers Market Xpansion Loans.
  • Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) offers financial support to companies wishing to export to developing countries through their Private Sector Directorate.

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