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Comparative FDI

Use this dashboard to compare foreign direct investment stocks overseas.



Foreign direct investment represents a significant component of the globalized economy. For Canada, the stock position of foreign direct investments represented $781 billion in 2016. The countries with the largest holdings of Canadian portfolio investment assets were the United States ($353 billion), United Kingdom ($73 billion), and the Barbados ($51 billion) in 2016.

Similarly, as a destination for foreign direct investments, Canada holds $733 billion of investment assets. The top three holders in 2016 were the United States ($364 billion), Netherlands ($114 billion), and Luxembourg ($86 billion).

How to use the data

Hover over country circles on the map to see the total stock of foreign direct investments held by the sender country (Canada is the default sender country). Circles are sized to the total asset position position at market value held by a country at the selected date (2014 by default).

To change the sender country, select a country from the ‘FDI From’ dropdown. Additionally, use drop-downs to limit the data by ‘FDI In’, ‘Region (Investment In),’ ‘Income Group (FDI In),’ or change the ‘Time Period.’

The bottom right pane represents the distribution of the sender country’s FDI across regions and the bottom left pane represents the distribution by income group. Each of these panes are horizontally divided between the sum of investments and the percentage.

Clicking a country on the map will replace the bottom right pane with a country-specific time-series analysis of the foreign security investments in the selected country from the sender country. Multiple countries can be selected at one time for comparison (no more than two at a time are recommended). Hold down Control + right click. Click again to deselect.

What the data show

High income countries account for 91% of the total at $708 billion foreign direct investments (at market) overseas in 2016. The United States, at $364 billion, alone accounts for 47% of all portfolio assets. Of the 9% of total Canadian foreign investment among developing regions, Mexico ($12.5 billion), Brazil ($10.7 billion), and China ($9.9 billion) are the primary holders of Canadian foreign direct investments.

Additionally, in these developing countries, Canada is the 5th largest investor in Mexico, 11th in Brazil, and 12th in China.

About the data sources

Data is drawn from IMF (International Monetary Fund), ‘IMF eLibrary Data, Coordinated Direct Investment Survey (CDIS).’ The World Bank’s geographical and income classification system is used. For comparison with aid flows countries were also classified using the OECD-DAC system.

Raw data used in this analysis is available here: FDI-Comparative-CIDP-Web.xlsx (12.6mb)


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