Cost Advantages

Local, Provincial and Federal Cost Advantages

Canada offers the lowest overall business cost of all G7 countries. This makes Canada an ideal target for aerospace investments. Thunder Bay's average wages are lower than the Ontario, and Canadian averages. Thunder Bay also has zero development charges, affordable cost of land and buildings, and competitive construction costs, providing businesses with superior opportunities for development.

Top 3 Cost Competitive Countries infographic
Source: KPMG Competitive Alternatives 2016

Combined CIT Infographic

Low Taxes

Ontario has a combined provincial (11.5%) and federal (15%) corporate income tax rate of 26.5%, making Ontario's combined general federal provincial CIT rate lower than the average of G20 countries and lower than the average federal plus state CIT rate in the United States.

Development Charges Infographic

Low Site and Building Costs

Thunder Bay offers extremely competitive land costs, construction costs, and zero development charges, making it an ideal location for expansion and new construction. Thunder Bay has a large amount of land zoned for new development, offering aviation, industrial, and commercial space.

Healthcare Costs Infographic

Low Healthcare Costs

Canada has a universal healthcare system, which means that average employer health costs per year for companies based in Ontario are 1/3 of the cost of the US average. Easier access to health care also translates to higher productivity rates due to less time off related to illness.

 The Canadian Advantage

Canadian flag wavingThe tight integration between the Canadian and American aerospace industries is reflected in trade as well as the partnerships between the companies themselves. As a result of global economic trends, many American firms continue to operate subsidiaries in Canada, benefiting from a cheaper Canadian dollar and government incentives.

Canada is an extremely business friendly country. It is consistently ranked highly competitive on major cost factors including labour, transportation, and taxes.

Canada has a lower dollar value, which increases international purchasing power for goods and services within Canada. This also means higher profits when selling to the US and global markets. This lower Canadian dollar has lead to business investment through out the country, as well as Ontario and the city of Thunder Bay.

The Canadian Government has created many funding programs to support and advance the business landscape of Northern Ontario. There are funding programs through FedNor and the Norther Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation that support the Aerospace sector, as well as grants for hiring apprentices and furthering the knowledge of skilled tradespeople.

 The Ontario Advantage

Queens Park350+ companies make up the Ontario aerospace market. With $6.4B in annual revenues generated by the Ontario aerospace market, aerospace plays a key role in Ontario's economy, part of a diverse advanced manufacturing sector producing the next generation of aerospace, robotics, artificial intelligence machinery and electronics.

Ontario is the best location for investment in Canada. Recently awarded this position by Site Selection Magazine's annual, "Best to Invest" ranking. Ontario is Canada's largest province, with a population of 13.8 million and workforce of 6 million.

Ontario offers competitive corporate tax rates, which are lower than the average federal-state CIT rate in the US. (Source: Ontario Ministry of Finance, 2017 Budget). With funding and incentive programs such as the Northern Ontario Business Development program, and programs such as NOHFC and FEDNOR, Ontario is committed to economic growth in the North.

 The Thunder Bay Advantage

Image of Thunder Bay International AirportThe Thunder Bay International Airport is a critical piece of transportation infrastructure for the region, linking the City and its northwest Ontario catchment area to centres of national and international commerce. The airport is well managed and offers four runways with the longest being 7318 feet long by 200 ft wide. The Airport welcomed over 869,000 passengers in 2018, serviced by four regular scheduled carriers and two vacation destination carriers.

Thunder Bay is the largest community on Lake Superior and an urban centre for all of Northwestern Ontario. When compared to US cities such as Minneapolis, Thunder Bay has 22% lower costs for digital industries, 20.8% lower R&D costs, and 21.8% lower costs for corporate services (such as international financial services and shared services centres). (Source: KPMG Competitive Alternatives 2016). Thunder Bay businesses benefit from these lower corporate service costs because of lower average wages for administrative and customer service level employees as well as financial professionals.

With no development charges, affordable cost of land and competitive construction costs, Thunder Bay offers prime real estate for development. Thunder Bay also features a superior quality of life and a lower cost of living for its residents.

Business Infographic

Labour Rates

Thunder Bay has a lower cost of labour when compared to many communities in Canada and the US. Being located within Ontario, Thunder Bay also benefits from lower healthcare costs than their US counterparts. Healthcare costs were $4,753 for Canada as compared to $10,348 in the USA (2016). Both of these advantages allow businesses in Thunder Bay be more cost effective and competitive.The average cost of labour in Thunder Bay is 7.79% lower than the Canadian average.


Hospital staff outside of Emergency Dept.One area in which Canadian companies are much more competitive than their US counterparts is healthcare. Ontario has a universal healthcare system, which means that average employer health costs per year for companies based in Ontario are 1/3 of the cost of the US average. (Source: MMK Consulting, 2016).




Site Rates

Create the Perfect Space to Fit your Business Needs 

Advanced manufacturing employee workingThunder Bay offers extremely competitive land costs and construction costs, as well as zero development charges, making it an ideal location for expansion and new construction.

Thunder Bay already has a large amount of land zoned for new development of industrial and aviation focused businesses. Combined with our strategic location, extensive transportation network, and abundance of natural resources, Thunder Bay is a thriving centre for business and offers a lower cost of development.

Building Acquisition

Thunder Bay also has a number of existing properties that are move-in ready for many businesses. For example, Intercity Industrial has a 100,000 square foot warehouse available and there is a 60,000 square foot heated facility available at the Port Authority.

Click here for further information on buying an existing business in Thunder Bay

Click here to view current land and property listings in Thunder Bay.


Picture of Internet routerThunder Bay is served by most national communications companies as well as TBaytel which is owned by the City of Thunder Bay. TBaytel has a 110 year history in Thunder Bay and has grown to be the largest independently owned communications company in Canada. They provide the fastest internet connection in Thunder Bay and the fibre trunk runs directly through the city (and is connected to the largest data centre or carrier hotel in Canada at Front Street). TBaytel provides reliable mobility, tv internet, telephone and security for business clients. Click here to request a quote for your business services.

Hydro Costs

SYNERGY NORTH logoSYNERGY NORTH is responsible for servicing electricity to the City Of Thunder Bay and the City of Kenora. SYNERGY NORTH builds, plans & maintains the power line system for the two cities and provides 24-hour emergency response.

Detailed hydro rates for Thunder Bay

Water and Property Tax Billing

Arial shot of Thunder Bay

Full Service Property Tax Rates (effective  2019 )

  • Commercial 4.06%

  • Industrial 4.49%

  • Large Industrial 5.13%



Water treatment facility

Full water and sewer rate details here.

Water rates (effective April 1, 2019)

  • Volumetric Charge = $1.049 /m³

  • Fixed cost = $0.778 per day ($284 per annum)



Natural Gas

Enbridge LogoThunder Bay Natural Gas services are delivered by Enbridge Gas. (On Jan. 1, 2019, Union Gas and Enbridge Gas Distribution combined to form Enbridge Gas.) Drawing on a 170-year history of providing safe and reliable service to customers.

View current gas rates here.

Please visit  or call 1 888 774-3111 for more information.

For additional information please contact the Development Officer at (807) 625-3960 or visit our Contact Us page.


Video Resources

Downloadable Files

Areospace Industries Report

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Advanced Manufacturing Report

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Aviation Profile

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Manufacturing Ontario North

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For additional information please contact the Development Officer at (807) 625-3960 or visit our Contact Us page.