Is Canada a high-tech country?

Location: Canada: high tech in a historical guise

Like the German family company Thomas Magnete, which plans to produce control valves for cars in Kitchener from summer 2009. The vacuum technology company J. Schmalz GmbH from Glatten and the software manufacturer CSB-System International from Geilenkirchen have already opened service offices in "Canada's Technology Triangle". Because the Atlantic is too wide to be able to deliver "just in time" to North American customers from Germany. The necessary flexibility is not given "when goods are on the way for almost six weeks to reach their destination," says Dietrich Thomas, managing partner of Thomas Magnete.

When one of the customers received the order to manufacture dual clutch transmissions for a US car manufacturer and Thomas Magnete was to supply the control valves, it was clear to the Herdorf company that they too would have to go to North America. "We had five locations in the US and two in Canada examined," says Thomas. After intensive discussions, the decision was made in favor of Kitchener. Until 1916 the place was still called Berlin and to this day it is considered the "most German" city in Canada.

The proximity to Toronto in particular is a locational advantage here: Toronto's international airport can be reached in less than an hour's drive. "This ensures a convenient connection to our main plant in Germany," says Thomas. From here there are also connections to the centers of NAFTA, which includes Canada as well as the USA and Mexico. 60 percent of the US market can be reached from Toronto with flights of less than two hours. Roads can reach 130 million people in Canada and the USA within a day. Highway 401, Canada's most important corridor for the exchange of goods with the United States, runs through the Waterloo region.