Virginia’s diverse economy and strong business climate provide an ideal advantage for Canadian companies entering or expanding in the U.S. market.
Canadian companies will find easy access to the U.S. market with 47% of the U.S. population located within a one-day drive of Virginia. The Commonwealth’s strong transportation infrastructure ensures optimal access to major east/west and north/south interstate highways and rail lines, regional and international airports, and seaports.
Virginia’s exceptional logistics include:
- Six interstate highways
- Two Class 1 railroads – CSX and Norfolk Southern
- 14 commercial airports serving Virginia, including Washington Dulles International
- 3rd-largest port on the East Coast - The Port of Virginia
The Port of Virginia is planning for additional growth with major expansion projects currently underway, and is the only port on the East Coast authorized for 55-foot channel depths to handle the larger cargo ships of the future as first and last port of call.
Virginia is adjacent to Washington, D.C., and within 480 kilometers of New York City.
Virginia’s proximity to Washington, D.C., allows for quick access to U.S. Embassies and federal decision-makers. Nonstop service to multiple Canadian destinations is available through Dulles International and Reagan International Airports.
In Virginia, you will find a business-friendly environment. More than 550 internationally owned companies are located here, and the international base continues to grow.
Virginia has a competitive cost environment for business:
- Electricity rates are below the U.S. average at 6.26 cents per kilowatt hour vs. 6.88 cents nationally
- Unemployment insurance taxes are the 7th-lowest in the nation and 53% lower than the national average
- Average workers' compensation costs among the nation’s lowest
- Building costs that range from 6% to 21% below the national average, depending on the region
kmX Chemical Corporation, Accomack County
Virginia is ranked No. 5 in Forbes and No. 4 by CNBC in their Best States for Business studies. The Commonwealth also ranked No. 2 in the Forbes study for regulatory environment, which looks at labor regulations, tax incentives, health insurance mandates, and occupational licensing.
Virginia’s biggest strength lies in the quality and productivity of its workforce. Virginia is a right-to-work state and, at 5.9%, has the ninth-lowest unionization rate in the country. Virginia is known for its world-class higher education system that provides a strong pipeline of new graduates from local and regional universities. The Virginia Community College System, comprising 23 community colleges, provides occupational and technical training programs, many of which are designed specifically to meet the needs of nearby industries.
Virginia is also a great place to live. The state’s diversity can be seen in its variety of landscapes, from Atlantic Coast beaches to the Blue Ridge Mountains. Virginia is home to a moderate four-season climate and provides a wealth of options for your employees to enjoy.
Canadian Companies with Virginia Locations
In the last 10 years, more than $500 million in capital investment has been announced by Canadian companies in Virginia. According to the Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C., over 210 Canadian-owned companies are operating in Virginia and employing nearly 13,000 people, including:
In 2016, Canada ranked 1st among Virginia export destinations.
Virginia – Canada trade
- Virginia exports to Canada: $2.9 billion
- Virginia imports from Canada: $1.9 billion
- Bilateral trade: $4.8 billion
- Virginia services exports to Canada: $1.4 billion
Virginia’s top goods exports to Canada
- Tractors: $273 million
- Paper & paperboard: $221 million
- Plastics & plastic articles: $215 million
- Paper & printing machinery: $193 million
- Motor vehicle parts: $161 million
Virginia’s top goods imports from Canada
- Paper & paperboard: $182 million
- Plastics & plastic articles: $133 million
- Furniture & bedding: $85 million
- Wood & semi-finished wood products: $75 million
- Aluminum & aluminum articles: $74 million
(Source: Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C.)
Harold Savard President & General Manager, Novatech Group
We got a lot of support from the people of Martinsville-Henry County. The state was also very important. I have never seen that type of support in my life. They want to help us have success.