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This agreement expired March 31st, 2017.

About the Agreement

Agreement History

Overall, the Canada - Atlantic Provinces Agreement on International Business Development provides a forum for the federal and provincial governments to work together toward a common goal: increased economic performance in Atlantic Canada through increased exports.

With the renewal of the Canada - Atlantic Provinces Agreement on International Business Development for 2011-2016, the Agreement will aim to:

  • increase the number of companies and organizations undertaking international business development activities;
  • increase sales for companies and organizations to current international markets;
  • assist companies and organizations to diversify their international markets;
  • develop a stronger culture of doing international business; and,
  • lead in international business development planning and coordination in Atlantic Canada.

Launched in 1994, the Agreement has been extended four times since, for a total investment of $35 million.

The funding of the Agreement is cost-shared between the federal government (70%) and the four Atlantic provincial governments (30%).


The aim of this agreement is to increase and diversify Atlantic Canada’s presence in foreign markets. The IBDA‘s integrative trade approach includes exports, investment, commercialization and communications.
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Program Areas

Since its inception in 1994, the Canada-Atlantic Provinces Agreement on International Business Development has been strategic in developing an exporting culture in Atlantic Canada through its four inter-related program areas.

  • Planning and Research: develops longer-term strategies and implementation plans for international business development and undertakes supporting research on companies' needs and best practices.

  • Market Information and Intelligence: assists sectors and companies/organizations by obtaining market intelligence and contacts, identifying international market opportunities and applying this knowledge to trade development activities.

  • Building Knowledge and Expertise: exposes companies and industry stakeholders to international business opportunities and ensures that they are well prepared with the capability, knowledge and information required to develop international business.

  • International Business Development Activities: undertakes business activities that support international business development strategies and contribute to contacts, alliances and ultimately sales for both existing and new exporters.
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Priority Sectors

This Agreement focuses on international business development in several sectors in Atlantic Canada. These sectors include:

Key Industries

  • Aerospace and defence
  • Building products and construction 
  • Consumer products
  • Cultural industries
  • Education and training
  • Energy 
  • Environmental industries
  • Food and beverages
  • Information and communications technologies
  • Life sciences and biotechnology
  • Ocean industries

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Agreement Partners

The Canada-Atlantic Provinces Agreement on International Business Development is an integral part of the federal and Atlantic provincial governments’ long-term plans for export development in Atlantic Canada. The Agreement is managed in cooperation by Government of Canada and the four Atlantic Provinces.

The federal partners in this Agreement are: 

The provincial partners in this Agreement are: 

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