Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries


This data layer contains the international, inter-provincial and territorial boundaries, as well as the boundaries of Canada's exclusive economic zone. It is not intended for legal use, and should be utilized for cartographic purposes only.

The dataset is comprised of three files: an administrative boundary file, an administrative areas file and a metadata file.

The administrative boundary file is made of non-overlapping, topologically correct (connected segments) simple features. A line that bounds two adjacent administrative areas defines an administrative boundary. An administrative boundary may be split into several smaller segments, due to changes in attribute information.

The administrative areas file is made of adjacent (contiguous) polygons. The polygon boundaries are aligned with the corresponding features in the administrative boundary file.

Each boundary segment has metadata that provides associated accuracy values. Depending on the type of boundary, the accuracy of a segment will vary as follows:

  • Exclusive economic zone of Canada: 1:1,000,000
  • Inter-provincial/territorial boundary: 1:100,000
  • International boundary: 1:5,000

The authoritative data source providers for this data layer are:

The Canada Centre for Cadastral Management of Natural Resources Canada performed the data integration of the Administrative Boundaries.

Download the Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries Fact Sheet [pdf 1.5 MB]


For more details on standards and specifications, see Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries, Level 1 Product Specifications [pdf 168 KB], Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries, Level 1 Feature Catalogue [pdf 59 KB] and Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries, Level 1 Metadata Specifications [pdf 94 KB].


For a complete description of collection metadata, see the Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries, Collection Metadata.

Use and Restrictions

Use of the GeoBase data is subject to the Open Government Licence – Canada.

Data Format

Canadian Geopolitical Boundaries datafiles are available in both GML (Geography Markup Language) and ESRI Shape files.

Free Data Viewer

As a service to GeoBase users we are providing links to some free viewers. However, GeoBase does not endorse and does not provide any kind of support for any of these viewers.