May 20, 2004

York Region Export Development Initiative continues

NEWMARKET – York Regional Council today approved the contract extension of the Region’s two Export Advisors, allowing the Region’s Export Development Initiative (EDI) to continue to December 2004.
Launched in 2000, the purpose of the York Region EDI is to familiarize local companies with the programs and information needed to succeed in the global marketplace.  For the first three years, the program was funded by Human Resources Development Canada.  In order to maintain the success it has achieved in the past, the EDI became a Region-funded initiative since 2003.
“The Region’s Export Development Initiative has been acknowledged as a model of success in the delivery of support services to small and medium-sized enterprises,” said Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch. “It is perceived by the Region’s business community as a proactive and innovative initiative to reach out and support economic growth.”
To date, the EDI’s Export Advisors provided service to 1,255 companies on export-related issues, either through company visits or the support hotline.  EDI services also include:
• Organizing seminars and workshops
• Holding export clinics for new entrepreneurs and small business at local business centres and associations
• Meeting with area municipal Economic Development Officers, presentations made at Chambers of Commerce networking sessions and attendance at other networking events
• Participate in trade shows, seminars and other networking events
• Assistance with export-related enquiries referred by the Small Business Enterprise Centres throughout the Region.
“There has been positive feedback from client companies about the proactive and constructive approach to the program,” said Markham Regional Councillor Frank Scarpitti, Chair of the Region’s Planning and Economic Development Committee.  “Increasing export and trade opportunities across the Region will benefit all municipalities.”
Recent EDI program successes include:
• Assisting a company in securing purchase order financing through Export Development Canada.
• Aiding a company owner in better understanding GST and PST implications for exports.
• Assisting a company with product liability and U.S. taxation issues.
• Helping a small home-based company to ship first of many orders to a large U.S.-based retailer.
For 2004, the EDI will produce an export newsletter, conduct an export survey to solicit interest for future activities, and build strategic alliances with the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters and the Schulich School of Business.
Businesses can speak with an Export Advisor from the York Region Export Development Initiative by calling the toll-free hotline at 1-877-464-9675, Ext. 1554. Inquiries can also be sent via e-mail at or by fax at (905) 895-3482.
Contact:   Wendy Lewis, Corporate Communications Services, York Region
- (905) 830-4444 or (416) 297-9696, ext. 1238
- Email:

The Regional Municipality of York is committed to providing cost-effective, quality services that respond to the needs of our rapidly growing communities.  York Region is comprised of the following nine area municipalities:  Aurora, East Gwillimbury, Georgina, King, Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, Vaughan and Whitchurch-Stouffville.  For more information, visit our Web site at:

Contact: Patrick Casey, Senior Media Relations Specialist, York Region

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