Canadian Online Business Surge Predicted

Compiled By Deborah Austin Online business-to-business trade in Canada will grow nearly sixfold by the year 2005 -- to C$272.5 billion, from $46.2 billion this year -- forecasts a new report, "Canada's B2B Future" from Forrester Research Inc. Automotive and petrochemical industries will dominate the growth. Tight links with the U.S. auto industry will help Canada's automotive supply chain sell $91 billion online in 2005, up from $9.9 billion in 2001, says the report. Second only to Michigan in North American auto manufacturing, Ontario will see $69 billion of that trade. Petrochemical industries will generate $45.9 billion in 2005 -- up from $2.5 billion in 2001 -- with Alberta alone generating $23 billion. Other fast-growth online industries include computing/electronics, paper/office products, shipping/warehousing, and food/agriculture. Independent Internet research firm Forrester Research is headquartered in Cambridge, Mass.

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