Canada's exports are highly diversified; the principal export groups are industrial goods, forestry products, mineral resources (with crude petroleum and natural gas increasingly important), and agricultural commodities. Imports are heavily concentrated in the industrial sector, including machinery, transport equipment, basic manufactures, and consumer goods. Trade balances are almost invariably favorable.
In 1989, the United States and Canada signed a free trade agreement; and in 1994 the United States, Canada, and Mexico signed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Currently, trade between the United States and Canada is essentially unhindered. Trade in goods and services between the United States and Canada accounts for approximately US $1.4 billion each day, almost equal to daily US trade with the entire European Union. In fact, the US–Canada trade relationship is the largest such economic association in history. Canada exports about 40 times more to the United States than to any other country, and imports about 14 times as much from the United States as from anywhere else.
Cars, trucks, and automobile parts, are the major exports of Canada (totaling 19.3%). Wood, paper, and paper products follow Canada's vehicle exports closely (totaling 14.6%). The top eight exports as of 2000 were as follows:
|% OF COUNTRY TOTAL|
|Passenger motor vehicles||15.4|
|Gas, natural and manufactured||5.4|
|Motor vehicle parts and accessories||3.9|
|Paper and paperboard||3.8|
|Wood and cork||3.3|
In 2000 Canada's imports were distributed among the following categories:
Principal trading partners in 2000 (in millions of US dollars) were as follows:
|China (inc. Hong Kong)||3,379||8,570||-5,191|