Survey Results: COVID-19’s impact on Canadian business in China

April 14, 2020 / CanCham

The second survey on Covid-19 and its impact on Canadian Business in China was distributed to the Canadian expat community in China between March 24, 2020 and April 12, 2020 through WeChat, LinkedIn, CanCham websites, and e-Mail.

The intention of the survey was to assess the impact Covid-19 and its related response has had on Canadian owned and operated businesses in China.

CanCham Findings

The results from our business community are clear: most members have been affected negatively by the COVID-19 situation from a revenues perspective during the upcoming quarter. Some are relying on support from local authorities to ease their financial situation.

All of them have taken major measures to ensure a safe environment for their employees. This can be reflected in the number of people still present here in Shanghai. Our members are looking to continue to do business with China for the long run.

You may find the full results below:

Q1) Industry Breakdown


Entertainment, 1

Photography/ Advertising, 1

Chamber of Commerce, 1

Architectural Consulting Services, 1

International Trade, 1

Conference, 1

Q2) What is your current location status?

Over 72% respondents are physically present in China. This is an increase of 12% from the survey conducted in February. This shows that business in China is resuming gradually.

Q3) How does the flight-ban of foreigners and limitation to 2 flights per week between Canada and China affect your current business?

Only 62% of respondents stated the reduction and temporary suspension of flights between Canada and China have had a negative impact, with 34% having no impact, while a few are actually positively impacted by the situation.

Q4) What are the impacts of the COVID-19 situation on your revenues in China after 2 months of implemented measures?

76% of respondents stated the situation has negatively impacted revenue. This is a decrease of 12% from results found in February, suggesting companies are adapting to a new normal and finding ways to increase their revenue.

Q5) How does the current World Economic Situation affect your business in China?

Overall, 82% respondents stated the World Economic Situation has negatively impacted their business in China, while 8% of respondents claim positive results. We see that impacts are not only caused by local measures anymore.

Q6) Is your current local production, supply chain, and partnerships affected by the situation?

70% respondents stated that their local production, supply chain and partnerships are affected by the situation.

Q7) How will the global COVID-19 pandemic affect your business strategy in China?

While 52% respondents stated that there will be project delays, 36% stated the strategy remains business as usual, and 22% actually stated that their business will increase with China. Only 6 respondents stated they will shift strategies and leave China.

Q8) How did you adapt your local sales communication, and media strategies?

52% respondents are making use of webinars, 48% are using Chinese Social Media, while 38% are using the same marketing strategy as before.

Q9) Has your staff returned to office and at what capacity? 

28% of respondents have returned to work full time. 34% respondents are still working from home, while 30% are working with rotational shifts.

Q10) Are you seeking support fromCanadian governments (Federal or Provincial) during this crisis? 

26% respondents are seeking support from Canadian governments.

Q11) Will you make use of local government business measures to help your company continue doing business in China? 

36% respondents are seeking support from local governments during this crisis, in the form of financial support, tax, rental, low interest loan, social benefit, labor basic pay rate, etc.

Q12) Would you be interested to participate in a Webinar with the Consulate General of Canada in Shanghai for a briefing session about the situation in Canada and its impact on relations with China?

82% respondents are interested in the consulate briefing. CanCham is actively working with the consulate to host one soon. Please stay tuned about more detailed information.

CanCham thanks all those who participated in the survey. Your input helps inform decision on how to mitigate the negative effects of the COVID-19 situation.