Find Freight, Shipping and Logistics expertise in Canada

Air, land and sea are all used to move goods to and from Canada. The three oceans (Atlantic, Arctic and Pacific) that surround the country provide it with a large shipping industry. Marine transport accounted for 48% of the value of Canadian international trade in 2004. Shipments from Canada are sent around the world, although trade to the United States dominates, with around $5.1 million worth of exports sent in 2010. South Korea and China were the next highest recipients of exports that year. Correspondingly, the USA and China were the largest importers to Canada.

The largest ports in terms of tonnage of trade are Vancouver, Come-By-Chance and Port Hawkesbury. These offer extensive and world-class facilities and services. For example, Port Metro Vancouver, operated by the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, contains 17 terminals handling bulk cargoes, representing 75% of the port’s throughput each year, finding it the busiest port in North America in terms of foreign export volume (2012). Accordingly, major shipping companies such as MSC and Maersk are represented in Canada.

Rail freight is also high, moving manufactured goods from Asia out of Canadian ports and across the country. Indeed a significant amount of freight in Canada involves multiple modes of transportation, or intermodal freight. Amongst numerous others, the Canadian National Railway Company, the largest in Canada in terms of size and revenue, operates a sophisticated freighting service. Additionally Canada possesses 26 airports as part of the national airports system, along with 726 certified airports (2012). The national airports system is largely owned by Transport Canada, the governmental department, and managed by Canadian Airport Authorities.

The World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index (2012) ranked Canada 12th out of 155 countries in terms of its infrastructure. It was given a score of 3.99, above the OECD average of 3.68.

All of the major international operators have a presence in Canada, including integrated companies and providers such as DHL, FEDEX, TNT and UPS. Hundreds of companies provide transportation and logistics consultancy services.

Transport Canada is part of the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities. Trade associations include the Shipping Federation of Canada, the Canadian Association of Importers and Exporters, the Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association, the Canadian Society of Customs Brokers and the Canadian Courier and Logistics Association.

The World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index (2012) ranked Canada 14th overall out of 155 countries, with a score of 3.85, 91.1% of the highest performer, Singapore. Each country is scored from one to five, with one being the worst performance in terms of logistics, infrastructure and customs amongst other categories. The strength of the Canadian sector is reflected in the rankings, scoring above the average for OECD countries in all categories – customs (17th), international shipments (18th), logistics competence (13th), tracking and tracing (14th) and timeliness (3rd).

Freight, Shipping and Logistics organisations in Canada
Canada Border Services Agency
Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association (CIFFA)