Printer-friendly version   



For Immediate Release


March 6, 2009

Ministry of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development




VANCOUVER – The new Asia-Pacific Business Centre, established to increase trade, investment and research and development opportunities between British Columbia and markets in Asia, was officially opened today by Ida Chong, Minister of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development.


             “The Asia-Pacific Business Centre is now open to serve B.C.-based companies and, at the same time, welcome Asian investors to British Columbia,” said Chong, also Minister responsible for the Asia-Pacific Initiative. “Asia represents a tremendous opportunity for British Columbia, and our government has been very active in building bi-lateral relationships. The Asia-Pacific Business Centre will work in collaboration with B.C.’s Trade and Investment offices in Asia, helping our home-grown companies establish partnerships in these key markets.”


Located at Vancouver’s Robson Square, the Asia-Pacific Business Centre will be a first point of contact for B.C.-based businesses seeking strategic market intelligence, referrals and information on doing business in Asia. The Business Centre will also help incoming investors from Asia connect to business and economic opportunities in British Columbia.


In addition to front counter services, the Asia-Pacific Business Centre houses country market specialists whose services will be available to qualified businesses and entrepreneurs. Meeting and video conferencing facilities are available for use, and the Business Centre’s staff will be able to help clients access services available at the neighbouring 2010 Commerce Centre.


“The Asia-Pacific Business Centre is a clear signal of the Province’s commitment to stronger trade and investment ties with Asia,” said Yuen Pau Woo, president and CEO of the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada. “In a time of global economic slowdown, the need to build business relationships in Asia is more critical than ever. British Columbia is playing a leadership role in helping Canadians prepare for a world where Asia will be an even more important player in the global economy.”


            The Asia-Pacific Business Centre will complement the Province’s five Asia-based trade and investment offices, located in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Seoul and Tokyo. These offices promote British Columbia as a destination for investment and trade, and a leader in research and development, as well as showcasing B.C. products and resources in these key markets. This spring, British Columbia will open its first office in India, to be located in Bengaluru.


In 2008, bi-lateral trade between British Columbia and the Asia-Pacific, including India, was worth $28.2 billion, an increase of over $10 billion or nearly 56 per cent compared to 1999’s amount. Over this same period of time, British Columbia’s exports to these Asian countries have increased by 52 per cent.


By 2020, the trade gain with the Asia-Pacific could be worth an estimated $76 billion for British Columbia and $230 billion for Canada. The total employment impact is estimated to be 255,000 jobs in British Columbia.


            The Asia-Pacific Business Centre builds on the Province’s Asia-Pacific Initiative and will help British Columbia solidify its position as Canada’s Pacific Gateway. For more information about Canada’s Pacific Gateway, visit the multilingual website


            Businesses, entrepreneurs and investors can contact the Asia-Pacific Business Centre at 604-660-9727 or toll-free at 1-888-880-ASIA (2742) or through email, In addition, potential clients can visit the centre in person. The Asia-Pacific Business Centre’s address is 800 Hornby St., Suite 288.







Joanne Whittier

Communications Manager

250 356-9428

250 893-5650 (cell)


For more information on government services or to subscribe to the Province’s news feeds using RSS, visit the Province’s website at