CME applauds NAFTA commitments to increase SME exports

Ottawa, September 27, 2017

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters applauds the Government of Canada’s actions to help Canadian small and medium enterprises (SMEs) grow exports to the NAFTA market. As part NAFTA re-negotiations, Canada, the United States and Mexico agreed, today, to include a new SME exports chapter in a modernized agreement.

“SMEs are the engine of the Canadian economy and support good middle-class jobs as well” said Dennis Darby, President and CEO of CME. “Helping SMEs achieve their full export potential is critical as not enough of them export and take advantage of free trade agreements. CME has consistently and assertively championed increased SME exports within NAFTA and around the world through enhanced FTAs and stronger government support.

The current NAFTA does not have a specific chapter on SMEs. The new measures commit the three partners to cooperate to increase trade and investment opportunities for SMEs. “It is encouraging to see NAFTA partners recognize the important contributions SMEs can make and work together to encourage small business owners to compete and grow in the North American market,” stated Darby.

“As part of its NAFTA engagement with the government, CME recommended stronger support for Canadian business looking export. The provisions announced today are a step in the right direction towards a modernized NAFTA that can strengthen manufacturing and make it more globally competitive. We are committed to working with industry and the government to ensure Canadian SMEs can take advantage of this historic opportunity,” concluded Darby.


Since 1871, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters has been helping manufacturers grow at home and, compete around the world. Our focus is to ensure manufacturers are recognized as engines for growth in the economy, with Canada acknowledged as both a global leader and innovator in advanced manufacturing and a global leader in exporting. CME is a member-driven association that directly represents more than 2,500 leading companies who account for an estimated 82 per cent of manufacturing output and 90 per cent of Canada’s exports.


Stefi Proulx

Director of Communications & Branding

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters

(613) 292-6070