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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Letter of Support: Implementing a Foreign Trade Zone Policy in Niagara

RE: Implementing a Foreign Trade Zone Policy in Niagara

On behalf of the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce and the1,500 members and 45,000 employees that we represent, we offer our support in having the Region of Niagara designated a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ).

Niagara is in a unique position with its current infrastructure and geographic location to benefit greatly and be able to contribute back to the Canadian economy by becoming a FTZ Point. Access to waterways such as the St. Lawrence Seaway through the Welland Canal and Great Lakes and our proximity to the U.S. border offer attractive opportunities to many companies looking to invest in locations within North America. These investments would lead directly to a stimulated economy bringing in new revenue and job opportunities.

As such, we support the Niagara Region in requesting the following:

  1. By designating Niagara as a FTZ Point, regional businesses and stakeholders, along with relevant federal, provincial and municipal officials and business leaders would be brought together by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) to create a task force that would meet every two to three months.
  2. The Task Force will address the working concerns of exporters, and generally facilitates activities and economic growth in this sector.
  3. Funding be sought from the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade & Development to market the FTZ Point, and to
    provide technical support and intelligence to firms using FTZ tax and duty relief programs.

With smart, proactive planning, Niagara could take hold of its natural advantages and become a major economic player. With a FTZ point, Niagara can market itself as an innovative region of the future, that is able to leverage technology, public funds and private sector capacity — the region will have an important tool in its tool kit to attract and retain businesses, and to attract the talent needed to support the growth of our businesses. We fully support a plan to establish the Niagara region as a FTZ point on behalf of our 1500 plus members.

We would like to thank you for your consideration on this issue – one that is critical to the future success of Niagara’s economy. If you require any further information please direct your staff to contact the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce at (905) 684-2361 or via email at


Best regards,


Ian Kowalchuk

Chair of the Board of Directors
Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

The Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce is the champion for the Niagara business community. With over 1,500 members representing more than 45,000 employees, it is the largest business organization in Niagara and the third largest Chamber in Ontario. The Chamber Accreditation Council of Canada has recognized the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce with its highest level of distinction.

For more information and interviews please contact:
Mishka Balsom
CEO, Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce
905-684-2361 ext. 227 or

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