New Tariff Tool Helps Businesses Navigate FTA Opportunities

By Christophe-Alfred Rouleau-Dick

A new Canada Tariff Finder tool will allow Canadian companies to quickly find information about tariffs that may be added to the goods they export to foreign markets under the various free trade agreements (FTAs) Canada has made with other countries.

The new online tool enables Canadians to quickly access information about tariffs. There is no fee to use the service which is available at www.tariffinder.ca. With just a few clicks, users can search for a product by keyword or by its Harmonized System code and quickly access the tariff data that applies to their products. The tool’s different functions make it simple to compare tariff information across various export markets, and to identify and forecast business opportunities related to the elimination or reduction of tariffs.

Canada has concluded several trade agreements that open promising new opportunities for Canadian products, in part by eliminating or reducing tariffs, which may provide a competitive advantage for a Canadian company exporting to that market. However, because tariffs vary in each market and for each product—even under free trade agreements—precise information is crucial for businesses exploring possibilities in a particular market. Accessing specific tariff information has proved challenging for some companies—especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with limited resources.

Aware of the need to make this information more accessible to Canadian companies, the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service (TCS) joined forces with the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC) to develop the Canada Tariff Finder.

“Trade agreements unlock new opportunities, and lower the overall costs of doing business. The Canada Tariff Finder will make it easier for Canadian businesses to access tariff information for their products when exploring export opportunities. This useful tool is part of a coordinated effort by the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service, BDC, and EDC to ensure Canadian businesses are ready to take advantage of Canada’s free trade agreements,” says Ailish Campbell, Chief Trade Commissioner at Global Affairs Canada.

Markets covered by the tool include the 28 countries of the European Union (EU) under the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), Mexico and the United States under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), South Korea, Peru, and two of the four members of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA): Switzerland and Iceland. New countries will be added over time to create a more comprehensive list of Canada’s free trade partners. The Canada Tariff Finder already contains the tariff information that will apply upon provisional application of CETA.

It is important to note that the tariff information contained in the tool is for information purposes only. The customs authorities from the importing countries make the final decision on what tariffs apply to imported goods. Users must verify these tariffs with the customs authorities of the country to which they intend to export.

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