Canada represents Maine’s largest trading partner and the top US export market.
With their geographic proximity, open market economy, stable business climate, and familiar business practices, Canada plays a crucial role in US trade development. Each day, $1.8 billion in goods and services cross the border, and over 400,000 people cross the border on a daily basis. Canada buys more from the US than any other nation, including all 28 countries of the European Union.
Canada has consistently been Maine’s largest export market with over $1.4 billion in goods and commodities exported in 2016, accounting for nearly 48% of all Maine exports worldwide. Two-way trade topped $3.1 billion in 2016.
Last year, the leading Maine exports to Canada were primarily in the natural resource products sectors with seafood exports topping $439 million; wood in the rough, logs and fuel wood, and wood sawn or chipped representing approximately $186 million; paper products representing $136 million of exports; and fruits nuts and nuts (think Maine wild blueberries) valued at $34 million.
Canada is also by far the largest source of foreign investment in the state, representing 54% of the foreign-owned companies in Maine. 32,500 Maine jobs depend on trade and investment with Canada.
Maine International Trade Center (MITC) leads focused trade missions to Canada, conducts trade education workshops and seminars specific to the country, and has provided answers to hundreds of technical assistance questions and trade counseling to Maine companies. MITC also maintains relationships with public and private sector entities in Canada to ease entry into the Canadian market for Maine companies.