Online infrastructure now covers more than 60 per cent of Canadian businesses

by Canadian Shipper

While the value of sales over the Internet in Canada remains small, the online infrastructure continues its impressive growth.

Businesses eagerly embraced the Internet in 2000, according to Statistics Canada’s Survey of Electronic Commerce and Technology, 2000. The report says 63% of businesses used the Internet in 2000, up from 53% in 1999. Thirty-nine percent of private sector employees had Internet access in 2000.

The proportion of businesses using the Internet advanced in almost all industry sectors. Internet use was most common in information and cultural industries (93%), private sector educational services (89%) and professional and technical services (84%). Forestry, logging and support activities had the lowest Internet penetration rate, 42%.

Of the businesses that used the Internet in 2000, 43% did so to access databases of suppliers, 23% did so for education and training, and 16% did so to access databases of customers.

The Internet and other similar networks continued to play an important role in communications. In 2000, 60% of private sector enterprises had e-mail, compared with 53% in 1999. All industry sectors recorded an increase in the percentage of enterprises with e-mail except utilities, where 83% of enterprises had e-mail in 2000.

Besides e-mail, 12% of enterprises had an intranet, an internal company communications network using the same protocol as the Internet, enabling communication within an organization. A smaller proportion (4%) had an extranet, a secure extension of an Intranet that allows external users to access parts of an organization’s Intranet.

In addition, a higher proportion of enterprises had a Web site in 2000: 25% of enterprises had a Web site, up from 22% in 1999.

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality for this release, contact Greg Peterson (613-951-3592, or, Science, Innovation and Electronic Information Division.

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