South Korea

The Honourable Victor Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade is bringing Ontario’s open for business message to South Korea October 13-15, 2019. This mission will showcase Ontario’s strengths in a diverse array of sectors including IT, automotive and aerospace. Ontario first opened its Trade and Investment Office in Seoul in 2017 and is already home to world leading Korean companies such as Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, Hyundai, Kia and many more.

Notable investments and partnerships

In 2018, Samsung announced the opening of an AI research and development lab in Toronto, led by University of Toronto Professor Dr. Sven Dickinson. The Toronto lab was established to work with their Silicon Valley team to pioneer AI R&D in the region, with the goal of making all of their connected devices intelligent by 2020. In the same year, LG Electronics signed a research partnership with the University of Toronto and founded the LG AI Lab in Toronto to focus on edge computing and edge AI, which LG plans to apply to its autonomous vehicles, home appliances, and a range of other products.

Did you know?

  • Approximately 94,000 Ontarians are of Korean origin.
  • In 2018, over 125,000 Korean tourists visited Ontario.
  • In the 2016-2017 school year, more than 3,100 Korean students were in Ontario.
  • Korean companies invested US$590.7 Million into Ontario and Ontario companies invested US$662.5 in Korea from 2003 to 2018.
  • Two-way trade between Ontario and Korea is valued at over US$5.5 billion dollars (2018)

Ontario’s sector strengths

Ontario is home to the 2nd largest IT cluster in North America, where industry giants like Amazon, IBM, Google, Cisco and Shopify invest in major R&D operations. The province has gained a reputation as a world-renowned artificial intelligence (AI) centre for pioneering R&D into commercialized AI applications. And as a result, the City of Toronto has been named North America’s fastest growing tech market for the past two years. In fact, in 2018, Toronto added more tech jobs than any other city in North America including San Francisco and more than New York City, Seattle and Boston – combined.

In the automotive sector, Ontario is the only subnational jurisdiction in the world with five OEMs and produces over 2 million vehicles per year – more than the United Kingdom or Italy. The automotive industry employs over 100,000 highly skilled workers, and plants based in Ontario have won a combined 33 awards from J.D Power and Associates. It’s also where Ford, GM, Google and Uber have injected more than $1 billion into connected and autonomous driving.

From the Canadarm and Dextre robotics on the International Space Station to globally renowned clusters in landing gears, aerostructures and avionics and flight management, Ontario has a century-long history of excellence in the aerospace sector. It also invests in substantial R&D in turboprop aircraft, business jets, turbine engines, landing gear systems, and avionics. That’s why Ontario manufacturers are part of the global supply chain for virtually every passenger aircraft in the world.

Ontario is Open for Business

Ontario has a long history of people driving discovery and invention and, like Korea, has a tradition of top-quality manufacturing; where new innovations, platforms and technologies meet the muscle of the industrial economy. Ontario is where smart, global companies look for the brightest people, highest quality products, and a pro-business climate with less red tape. The message for Korea and the rest of the world is that Ontario is open for business.

Ontario International Trade and Investment Office

The Trade and Investment Office in Seoul is the official representation of the Government of Ontario, Canada in Korea. We work to attract investment to Ontario, to promote awareness about products from Ontario and to facilitate international innovation partnerships. Located in the Embassy of Canada, we provide customized information and services including market intelligence, site location assistance, connections to Ontario exporters and introductions to science and technology clusters.

Contact information

Sonja Panday
Head of the Ontario Trade and Investment Office
Counsellor (Economic Affairs - Ontario)
Canadian Embassy in Seoul, Korea