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back to index backAMERItalk March,  2017


International Location Report: Expectations for a Steady Canadian Economy in 2017

Expanded immigration will help Canada to fill its need for skilled workers as its high-tech industry sectors expand and its economy continues to grow.

Most of Canada's economists agree that the country's economic performance will be better in 2017 than it was in 2016. Canada's economy contracted 1.6 percent in the second quarter of 2016, a result of the intense Alberta wildfires in and around Fort McMurray, which caused oil sands production shutdowns and mass evacuations. This disaster also had a huge impact nationally, because Alberta produces about 80 percent of Canada's crude oil and 68 percent of its natural gas (the oil and gas sector also accounts for about 18 percent of the province's GDP).

"The Alberta wildfires, and the sharp pullback in oil sands production in May, took the Canadian economy on a brief detour into negative growth," comments Craig Wright, senior vice president and chief economist at Royal Bank of Canada (RBC). "The recovery that is under way should spur a similarly sharp rebound in growth, and we anticipate that momentum will carry over into 2017."

It's also hoped that Canada's 2017 economy will benefit from improved energy prices, low interest rates, and federal stimulus. RBC forecasts the Canadian GDP will grow at a rate of 1.8 percent in 2017, up from 1.3 percent in 2016. However, even if energy prices do rebound significantly, they will not likely be back to levels that prevailed over the past decade, due to ongoing competition from lower-cost shale producers.

For 2017, the Conference Board of Canada predicts the provinces with the highest GDP increases will be British Columbia (3 percent), Ontario (2.6 percent), Manitoba (2.6 percent), and Prince Edward Island (1.7 percent). Provinces that are more resource-dependent, such as Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador — are expected to struggle with maintaining positive growth.

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Source: Area Development - GAI






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