Strategy In Brief

Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor:

The Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor is a fully integrated multimodal transportation system that offers deep water ports, efficient and reliable road and rail networks with access to U.S. markets, and airports with air cargo access to/from international markets. Through public and private sector cooperation, the Atlantic Gateway provides seamless, secure and reliable transportation services connecting North American markets and markets in Europe, the Caribbean, Latin America and Asia (via the Suez Canal). Atlantic Canada’s unique geographic advantages, coupled with its world-class transportation network, have led to the Atlantic Gateway becoming an important trade hub.

The National Policy Framework for Strategic Gateways and Trade Corridors launched by the Government of Canada in 2007 guides the development and implementation of strategies that foster further development and exploitation of Canada’s transportation systems most important to international trade. The Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor Strategy is the result of a collaborative partnership between the Governments of Canada and the four Atlantic provinces.  It provides a balance of immediate measures and longer-term directions that set the stage for continued collaborative efforts of governments and engaged private sector stakeholders to improve the efficiency of the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor.


The Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor is a strategic, integrated, and globally competitive transportation system for international commerce to and from North America.


  • Strengthen Canada’s competitiveness in attracting a larger share of global commerce to and from traditional markets and with emerging international economies;
  • Advance a safe, secure, efficient and sustainable multimodal transportation system that contributes to the economic prosperity of the Atlantic provinces and Canada; and
  • Promote the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor’s transportation system assets, specialized services and niche opportunities to exporters and importers, at home and internationally.

Core Strategy Components:

Strategic Infrastructure - For the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor to achieve its full potential, it is vital that the private and public sectors invest in infrastructure that creates economic opportunities and directly contributes to the competitiveness of Canadian trade. As well, transportation providers must make all possible improvements to their operations to maximize intermodal transportation efficiency in the existing network.   

International Trade Promotion and Marketing - Targeted promotion and marketing is key to communicating the advantages of using the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor to international importers and exporters.

Economic Growth Opportunities - The Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor Strategy will build upon existing assets and resources, taking advantage of international trade and value-added service opportunities that will stimulate economic growth and create jobs.

Border Efficiency and Security - An efficient and secure Canada-U.S. border is crucial for the success of the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor.  Enhancements to international border crossings will ensure the efficient and safe transport of freight and passengers by sea, rail, air, and road.

Policy and Regulatory Issues - To have the most efficient transportation system possible, governments and the private sector must jointly identify and address the policy and regulatory issues that affect the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor.  

Technology and Innovation - Technology and innovation are important for optimizing the efficiency and quality of the transportation system.  Using technology and innovation in an integrated system increases productivity and accessibility, reduces traffic congestion, and limits the environmental impact of transportation activities.

Knowledge and Skills - A highly skilled, mobile, adaptable and reliable workforce is key to the efficient operation of the Gateway. The Strategy will provide a coordinated approach among management, labour organizations and higher educational institutions to make transportation skills, logistics training and supply chain management a priority.

Environment - Creating a more fluid and efficient trade and transportation system can reduce fuel consumption, traffic congestion and the environmental impact on communities. The gateway approach promotes environmental sustainability through an emphasis on an intermodal transportation system.

Governance - Cooperation between the public and private sectors and across transportation modes is vital to the success of the gateway approach. Implementing this strategy will require continued commitment and collaboration among all governments and private sector partners working together to identify and respond to the challenges and opportunities facing the Atlantic Gateway and Trade Corridor.

Click here to read the full text of the Strategy

Canada's Atlantic Gateway