Highly skilled people

Better educated than any OECD country. 69% of Ontario adults possess a post-secondary education – a rate higher than any OECD country.

A chart detailing Ontario’s educational obtainment compared to other regions
69% Higher education attainment*
  • Ontario: 69%
  • Japan: 52%
  • United States: 47%
  • United Kingdom: 46%
  • Germany: 41%

*Statistics Canada, OECD, 2018

Our universities and colleges provide a stream of high quality talent. The University of Toronto ranks among the top 20 global universities and University of Waterloo graduates are the second most frequently hired by Silicon Valley companies.

An infographic detailing Ontario university rankings in various categories

Universities in the global ranking

University of Waterloo graduates are 2nd most frequently hired by silicon valley companies
according to the Wall Street Journal

6 top 300 global universities
according to us news and world report

University of Toronto
Top 20 global university
according to US News and World Report

Top 25 global Computer Science programs
#15 University of Waterloo
#25 University of Toronto
according to US News and World Report

A top producer of STEM graduates

We produce over 40,000 STEM graduates annually.

graduation cap icon

Stem grads per year top 5 in North America

Source: Statistics Canada, Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A female scientist in a white lab jacket adding notes to a book

Access to talent through immigration

Our welcoming approach to immigration expands our talent pool further while producing different perspectives that enrich the culture of innovation.

Here, the federal and provincial governments work together to implement immigration programs that help companies recruit and retain highly skilled international talent at the speed of business.

A man is handing a travel document to a female airline worker
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Business Days

The Global Skills Strategy offers quick work permit processing for highly skilled talent.
Source: Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration
I think that the Canadian government made a smart move to offer the new fast track visa program (Global Skills Strategy) Tech companies' hiring timelines work in six week – not six month intervals –because things move fast. We need to hire quickly in order to help meet our ambitious goals for growth, so speed is of the essence.

Kathryn Hume
VP of Product and Strategy

Competitive business costs

In Ontario, you’ll save on some of your biggest business costs, money you can use for further investments, innovation and growth.

The convergence of IT with traditional sectors, has drawn attention to Ontario’s talent advantage. Comparable high quality talent found in top U.S. IT hubs such as Boston or New York is available here at a fraction of the cost, up to 45% less.

High quality talent at low cost

A chart comparing Ontario city salaries with those in the United States
High quality talent at low cost
Location Labour Quality Labour Cost
SF Bay Area, CA 10 $128,821
New York, NY 8.3 $108,212
Washington, D.C. 8 $112,721
Seattle, WA 9.5 $125,908
Boston, MA 8.7 $108,200
Atlanta, GA 8 $98,585
San Antontio, TX 6.5 $103,529
Columbus, OH 6 $100,410
Charlotte, NC 6.2 $98,688
Ottawa, ON 6 $70,761
Toronto, ON 8 $69,649
Waterloo, ON 10 $70,020

* CBRE Scoring Tech Talent, 2017, Software Engineers. Figures in U.S. dollars.

Competitive corporate tax rates (%) on manufacturing

Combined national/sub-national rates

  • Ohio: 21.0%
  • Ontario: 25.0%
  • Indiana: 25.7%
  • Michigan: 25.7%
  • New York: 26.1%
  • Illinois: 26.5%
  • Wisconsin: 27.2%
  • Minnesota: 28.7%
  • Pennsylvania: 28.9%

Source: Ernst and Young, 2018 MEDJCT Commissioned Study

Globally competitive corporate taxes

  • U.S. Average: 25.8%
  • Combined Federal-Ontario: 26.5%
  • G7 Average: 27.6%
  • Combined Federal-Provincial Average*: 28.0%

*All provinces excluding Ontario
Source: Ernst and Young, 2018 MEDJCT Commissioned Study, OECD, 2018

Lower healthcare costs

Employer health costs per year for a typical firm in Ontario are one-third the cost of the U.S. average thanks to the province’s universal healthcare system.

An infographic comparing employer health costs between Ontario and the U.S.
  • Ontario: $360 (Thousand USD)
  • United States: $997 (Thousand USD)

*MMK Consulting, 2016

Affordable housing

Ontario cities compare favourably with their North American peers — less money buys more living space, according to the Median Multiple index.

An infographics comparing housing affordability between Toronto and San Francisco
  • Toronto: 7.7
  • San Francisco: 9.2

*Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, 2018

Competitive utility costs

Electricity costs in Ontario are competitive with our U.S. peers, and from here companies can be a part of the global shift to a low-carbon economy. Ontario’s clean electricity system helps establish the province as a North American leader in the fight against climate change. Ontario-based firms can reduce energy costs further by taking advantage of one of North America’s largest natural gas trading hubs.

Dawn Hub: Abundant, competitively priced natural gas in Ontario

Located in Southwestern Ontario, the Dawn Hub gives Ontario businesses direct access to North America’s major natural gas supplies. Currently, more than 100 companies actively trade at Dawn, offering the ability to stabilize the cost of natural gas throughout the year, in spite of any fluctuations.

Business landscape

A stable and competitive business environment

Companies that choose Ontario can have confidence in the province’s long term political and economic stability. Ontario is at the centre of one of the most stable and competitive business environments in the world. Canada has the world’s most stable banking system, is ranked the second most politically stable and is rated among the top three best countries for business. No wonder Canada has also been named one the best countries in the world to headquarter a business.

An infographic showing how Canada ranks in various economic categories

Canada ranked

2nd best place in the world to start a business
Source: The World Bank, 2017.

3rd in the 2018 Global Entrepreneurship Index
Source: Global Entrepreneurship and Development Institute.

#2 for best place to locate a global HQ
Source: US News and World Report, 2018.

Free trade deals with 46 countries
1.6b customers
Source: Ontario Ministry of International Trade.

How we live

Tolerant. Inclusive. Connected

Ontario is what the future should look like. A livable space with the comforts and quality of life to attract talented people, especially the next generation of digital natives, looking for a home. We’re aware that digital technologies and machine learning are changing the way we live. We know they raise hard questions about the future of work, privacy and income equality.

Quality of life

Ontario cities consistently rank among the best places to live and work in the world*

  • #3 Vancouver
  • #16 Toronto
  • #19 Ottawa
  • #21 Montreal
  • #32 Calgary
  • #34 San Francisco
  • #36 Boston
  • #37 Honolulu
  • #44 New York
  • #46 Seattle
  • #49 Chicago

*Mercer - Quality of Living, 2019

A well-dressed man standing in a vineyard holding a tray with a bottle or red wine and two glasses

But we’re not afraid to try new approaches. We know that governments and firms have to invest in training programs that help employees get the skills they need for an information economy. And our publicly funded higher education system gives us the latitude for collaboration between government, business and academia to re-tailor curriculums and priorities to meet changing economic needs.

Above all, people want places that work. Where we can get around on public transportation. Raise a family. Where no one is denied quality healthcare when they’re sick and a hospital visit isn’t accompanied by the threat of bankruptcy. A festival of entertainment and inspiration.

A place we can breathe.

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