About NAICS

The North American Classification System

The industries on this site are classified according to the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Canada of 2007 and 2012. Statistics Canada maintains this industry classification which has superseded the 1980 Standard Industrial Classification (SIC).

NAICS was jointly adopted in 1997 by Canada, Mexico and the United States against the backdrop of NAFTA. The classification was designed to provide common definitions of the industrial structure of the three countries and a common statistical framework to facilitate the analysis of the three economies.

Considering the dynamics of today's economies, Canada, the United States and Mexico agreed upon revisiting the structure of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) every five years to make any necessary changes. As per the agreement, in 2012, a revision of NAICS was implemented.

NAICS was revised in 2012 to reflect changes to the Canadian and world economies. In particular, the Information and Cultural Industries sector was once again updated. The updates take into account the rapid changes within this area, including the merging of activities.

Its hierarchical structure is composed of sectors (two-digit code), subsectors (three-digit code), industry groups (four-digit code), and industries (five-digit code). These are broadly comparable for all three countries, although there are a number of important exceptions.

A country may choose to breakdown industries (five-digit code) into national industries (six-digit code) in order to capture additional detail. As the name indicates, national industries are unique to each country and cross-comparisons generally do not apply.

top of page

Sectors of the canadian economy

NAICS Canada 2012 consists of 20 sectors,102 sub-sectors, 323 industry groups, 711 industries and 922 Canadian industries, and replaces NAICS Canada 2007.