Experience the difference of operating your business in a region where your success truly matters. Niagara’s elected officials, economic development officers, planners and developers are eager to help your business succeed — and we’ve got the processes and programs in place with the results to prove it.
It’s easy enough to say you’re open for business. It’s harder to prove it. That’s why Niagara works tirelessly as a region to capture the real-world results that prove our region is an incredibly cost-competitive place to own and operate a business.
Affordable land, fairly priced utilities and taxes, collaborative approaches to labour relations, low healthcare costs and a highly efficient logistics infrastructure make a significant impact on the bottom line for Niagara’s businesses. In a 2016 cost competitiveness comparison, KPMG’s Competitive Alternatives 2016 study ranked Niagara as Ontario’s second most cost competitive centre for business overall — and more competitive than all 76 American jurisdictions in the study.
Compare Niagara’s industrial tax rates with those of other nearby cities, and it’s clear that supporting the businesses that are propelling Niagara’s economy forward is a priority. Averaged between the three cities, the industrial tax rate for Welland, St. Catharines and Niagara Falls is just 92 cents, significantly lower than nearby Oakville’s $2.57, as an example. Generous tax incentives available through a variety of incentive programs create additional savings opportunities for businesses.
With a combined federal and Ontario general corporate income tax rate of 26.5%, Niagara offers businesses a lower rate than what they would typically pay in the US, where the average combined federal-state rate is 38.9%.
Employer healthcare costs are also significantly lower for companies that locate in Niagara over a US location, thanks to Ontario’s single payer health care system. Health care costs for an employer in Ontario with approximately 91 employees are estimated at $360,000, while a similar-sized company in the US would face employer health costs of approximately $997,000. Canada has a key cost advantage over the US: healthcare. Roughly 20% of overall health spending in the US is borne by companies, versus a comparable 4% in Canada, according to TD Bank’s economics team.
Perhaps the most convincing argument for doing business in Niagara is the calibre of companies who choose to operate businesses here. From General Motors, which has been operating in St. Catharines since 1929, to Innio with their “Brilliant Factory” in Welland, Niagara is home to a diverse range of successful multi-national companies. In the last five years alone, over $4 billion in investment was made in Niagara.