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Decomposing Canada’s Market Shares: An Update

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Building on the shift-share analysis of Barnett and Charbonneau (2015), this note decomposes Canada’s market shares in the United States, Europe and China for imports of non-energy goods into competitiveness, preference shifts and an interaction term. We find that, despite the depreciation of the dollar, Canada continued to lose market share over 2014–17 (around 0.4 percentage points lost per year on average over four years). Competitiveness losses are widespread among sectors and spread out over time. Losses from shifting preferences have stabilized since 2012 and are concentrated in motor vehicles and parts, forestry products, and building and packaging materials. Canada’s share of European and Chinese imports of non-energy goods has been stable at around 2 and 1 per cent, respectively. However, in each case, one key sector offsets competitiveness losses in a broad range of sectors. Canada’s exports in some markets have collapsed over recent years (e.g., small trucks, electrical apparatus for telephony), which suggests that some export capacity has been lost (or otherwise reallocated through a mandate change). In addition, we observe that Canada’s market share in US imports of services has been eroded by stiff competition from emerging markets, such as India. Finally, relative price movements appear to partly explain Canada’s lack of competitiveness in relation to Mexico and China for US imports of non-energy goods, more specifically in motor vehicles and parts and consumer goods.

JEL Code(s): F, F1, F10, F14, F4