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Steady As She Goes: Halifax Economy To Continue On Slow And Stable Growth Path This Year And Next

Ottawa, November 20, 2018 – Growth in the Halifax economy is on pace to reach 1.8 per cent in 2018, before slowing to 1.4 per cent next year, according to The Conference Board of Canada’s Metropolitan Outlook: Autumn 2018.

“The Halifax economy will continue to experience steady growth this year and into 2019. A healthy manufacturing sector is being supported by ongoing shipbuilding work, while increased exports and higher levels of passenger traffic are contributing to solid growth in transportation and warehousing,” said Alan Arcand, Associate Director, Centre for Municipal Studies, The Conference Board of Canada.

Highlights

  • Growth in the Halifax economy is on pace to reach 1.8 per cent this year, with growth moderating to 1.4 per cent in 2019.
  • Fuelled by gains in the trade sector and in the health care and public administration industries, total employment is set to rise 3.1 per cent this year.
  • In comparison, Montreal is forecast to be the fastest growing census metropolitan area (CMA) in Canada this year, with real GDP forecast to grow by 2.9 per cent.
Halifax’s manufacturing sector is expected to post strong growth in 2018, as work continues on the multi-year, multi-billion-dollar contract to build ships for the Canadian navy. However, with the current project now well underway, growth is set to slow next year. The city’s primary and utilities sector, which includes oil and gas extraction, has seen output fall nearly 24 per cent over the past three years. Some relief is expected this year, but that will be short-lived as another decline is on tap for 2019 in line with the maturation of the Sable Island and Deep Panuke offshore gas fields.

Output growth in the services sector is on track to remain fairly steady. Recent gains have been driven by strong performances in industries such as wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, health care, and educational services. The wholesale trade sector, in particular, has benefited from increased exports thanks to the implementation of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with the European Union and higher Asian demand for Nova Scotia seafood.

Employment in the Halifax region has been strong so far in 2018, following several years of tepid growth and a decline in 2017. Fuelled by gains in the trade sector and in the health care and public administration industries, total employment is set to rise 3.1 per cent this year, although a small dip is expected in 2019.



Source:conferenceboard.ca Date:10/23/2018


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