Table 11.10
Summary of interprovincial trade flows methods and sources

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  Methodology and sources


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Primary goods

Trade patterns are generally obtained by asking producers where goods and services are sold.

  • Agricultural products (livestock, grains, dairy products): Surveys from Statistics Canada's Agriculture Division; Records from the Canadian Grain Commission, Records from Canadian Dairy Commission; Records from Agriculture Canada.
  • Metallic and non-metallic ores and concentrates: Annual Census of Mines, Quarries and Sand Pits conducted by Natural Resources Canada.
  • Energy commodities: Surveys of the Energy section of Statistics Canada. The trade patterns for crude oil is modified to correspond to the concept of the trade flow program. This is done based on trade movement of crude oil subject to domestic demand/supply constraints.

Manufactured goods

The principal source is "destination of shipments" from Statistics Canada Annual Survey of Manufacturers. This information is combined with the results of the Wholesale Trade Commodity by Origin and Destination survey to bridge the gap between "first" and "final" destination of shipments.

Other goods

Construction and Utilities related commodities are included in this category. By nature, the output of construction cannot be traded outside province where work is put in place. For utilities, electricity is the only commodity for which trade flows are measured. These flows are obtained from published electricity disposition table by Statistics Canada Energy section.


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Transportation and storage

  • Storage (grain): Based on flows of major grain commodities.
  • Transport related to travel (Taxi, urban and interurban bus and air): Derived from Travel Survey of Residents of Canada and Air Transport Origin and Destination surveys of the Transport Division of Statistics Canada.
  • Freight (trucking): Trucking Commodity Origin and Destination Survey.
  • Freight (marine): Marine International Freight Origin and Destination Survey.
  • Freight (rail): Rail Commodity Origin and Destination Statistics.


Commodities included are "telephone and telecommunications", "postal services", radio and television broadcasting" and "cable and other subscription programs". For these commodities, source data are limited. Trade patterns are derived from provincial domestic demand of the Input-Output framework.

Business and computer services

Trade patterns derived from occasional information on destination of sales of Statistics Canada annual surveys of various industries. The lattest years are (1998 and 2003).

Financial services

No survey or administrative information on origin and destination of financial services is available. Trade flows fluctuate as a result of changes in domestic supply/demand constraints.

Wholesale and retail margins

  • Wholesale margins: Interprovincial trade distributions are derived from the Wholesale Trade Commodity Survey by Origin and Destination. The location of the wholesaler represents the province of origin of the wholesale margin, and the destination of wholesale sale represents the destination of the wholesale margin.
  • Retail margins: Trade patterns are derived from 1994 survey of growing small and medium-sized enterprises. The survey provided the proportion of out-of-province sales of small to medium-sized retailers; see catalogue no. 61-523Strategies for Success: A profile of Growing Small and Medium-sized Enterprises in Canada.

Personal and recreational services

Various recreation and personal services can be exported when consumed by non-residents (travel and tourism). Interprovincial trade in these services were derive from the Travel Survey of Residents of Canada which contains information on the province of origin of travelers and province of travel expenditures by broad categories of outlays such as transportation fares, vehicle operations, accommodations, restaurants and drinking places. These expenditure trade flows are allocated to appropriate commodities such as accommodation, meals, alcoholic beverages consumed on licensed premises, motor vehicle rentals as well as recreation and entertainment services.

Source: Guide to the Income and Expenditure Accounts, Statistics Canada, catalogue no.13-017-X