Global economic disruption from COVID-19 batters ranks of Canada's export business

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      Like other sectors in the economy, Canadian exporters have taken a hit.

      The global economic disruption caused by ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has thinned the ranks of exporting businesses in the country.

      In a report released Thursday (July 23), Statistics Canada revealed that the number of exporters in May 2020 declined 21.2 percent from the same month last year.

      In May this year, there were 17,576 goods-exporting businesses, with three provinces accounting for 79 percent of the nationwide reduction.

      These are Ontario (-2,283), Quebec (-1,184), and British Columbia (-687).

      Statistics Canada also provided a picture of how different exporting sectors fared.

      “The decline in the overall number of exporting establishments was led by the manufacturing sector (-1,676 firms), followed by wholesale trade (-1,335) and retail trade (-553),” the federal statistics agency reported.

      Businesses exporting to the U.S., which is Canada’s largest trading partner, took a huge blow, with 3,833 companies stopping operations.

      “Although the spread of COVID-19 showed signs of slowing in Europe, the number of enterprises exporting to the United Kingdom (-413), France (-290) and Germany (-262) declined year over year,” according to Statistics Canada.

      In Asian markets, the number of businesses exporting to three big markets in the region fell by nearly 700.

      According to Statistics Canada, this was led by China (-263), India (-240), and Japan (-187).

      “However, exporters of all employment sizes recovered slightly in May, following record low levels in April,” the agency reported.

      In that month, some exporters “partially resumed their activities”.