B.C. to lead all Canadian provinces in economic growth in 2016

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British Columbia’s economic growth is expected to outpace all Canadian provinces again in 2016, and the province’s positive outlook will also draw tens of thousands of Canadians to migrate west into the province.

According to a new report by the Conference Board of Canada, B.C. is expected to end the year with a real GDP growth of 2.7% and take in 20,000 Canadians from other provinces, particularly those with struggling oil-producing industries.

Forecasters are predicting strong growth in the province’s goods and services industries and continued “solid demand” for new homes, with no signs of a slowdown. As well, the manufacturing and tourism industries in B.C. are also expected to thrive with the low loonie.

“British Columbia posted the strongest economic growth last year and, thanks to widespread gains, is expected to lead the provincial growth rankings over the next two years,” said Marie-Christine Bernard, the Associate Director of Provincial Forecast for the Conference Board of Canada, in a statement.

Only three other provinces are expected to see an economic growth of over 2% annually, namely Ontario, Manitoba, and Nova Scotia. The provincial economies of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland and Labrador will continue to struggle due to the slump in oil prices.

With an ongoing provincial recession, Alberta will come dead last in growth with a retraction of 1.1%. It is the only Canadian province to see negative growth.

Earlier this month, a separate report by the Conference Board of Canada forecasted that Vancouver will be the fastest growing metropolitan economy in Canada in 2016 with a growth of 3.3%.

2016 provincial economic growth

  1. British Columbia: +2.7%
  2. Ontario: +2.4%
  3. Manitoba: +2.3%
  4. Nova Scotia: +2.1%
  5. Quebec: +1.7%
  6. Prince Edward Island: +1.7%
  7. New Brunswick: +0.8%
  8. Saskatchewan: +0.7%
  9. Newfoundland and Labrador: 0.0%
  10. Alberta: -1.1%

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