Export Development Canada’s Trade Confidence Index (TCI) captures the perspectives of more than 2,000 Canadian exporters a year and reveals information not readily available in traditional trade statistics. The biannual index showcases the concerns and expectations of Canadian companies for the future, and their evolving international strategies. EDC has conducted this survey since 1999.


Overall outlook: The TCI’s key findings

1. Canadian trade confidence has fallen after a mid-year acceleration, and remains well-below our survey’s historical average of 72.8.

Trade confidence is at 65.7 (down 2.9 index points since our June survey)




2. With tighter financial conditions and weak trade growth, global market conditions continue to exert pressure, directly impacting exporter sentiment.

(on left). 72% say inflation has had a negative impact on business, (right). 50% of respondents expect inflation to impact their business for more than a year


(on left) Rate hikes continue to have negative impact, (on right) Higher borrowing costs a top impact of rate hikes




3. There’s a notable demand for financing. One-third of businesses surveyed sought funding, with average requests totalling $2.8 million. An average of $1.4 million wasn’t granted to these companies.

Average financing requests totalling $2.8 million. An average of $1.4 million was not granted to these businesses.




4. While Canadian exporters are currently facing many challenges, their optimism and resilience remains. The majority of respondents to our survey indicated that they’re planning to expand to new markets.

Female fashion designer sits at desk with laptop


Intent to diversify their export markets:

66% intend to diversify to other markets, down two percentage points since June 2023






For companies planning to start exporting to new destinations, there’s continued interest in the United States, Mexico and Europe.

Top planned export destinations
% of respondents

Top markets for those to start exporting: United States 46%  Mexico 21% Germany 16% France 15% Spain 13%




About EDC’s Trade Confidence Index

This TCI survey was conducted between Oct. 8 to Nov. 2, and released on Dec. 14. Twice a year, EDC surveys Canadian exporters and businesses planning to export. The results are a pulse check of their level of confidence and expectations of international trade opportunities over the next six months.


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Date modified: 2023-12-19