Employment to soar in Calgary and Edmonton
Fuelled by rising oil production, Alberta will lead Canada in economic growth this year and employment in Calgary and Edmonton is expected to strengthen through 2016 with the addition of 120,000 new jobs, according to a special report released Friday by BMO Capital Markets Economics.
The BMO report – Calgary and Edmonton: Partners in Economic Growth – said the spillover effect of rising oil production extends across various sectors in both Calgary and Edmonton, including manufacturing of products for oil exploration and extraction, transportation, warehousing and retail trade.
“Over the medium term, employment in Alberta’s two largest cities should strengthen through 2016, adding a combined 120,000 jobs,” said Robert Kavcic, economist with BMO Capital Markets and author of the report. “We anticipate that the jobless rate will be below four per cent in both cities – back to pre-recession levels, but not quite as low as during the period of extreme labour shortages in 2006-2007.”
Employment, hit hard during the recession with falling oil prices and tight credit conditions in the energy sector, rebounded to record levels up 4.1 per cent and 2.9 per cent year over year, in Calgary and Edmonton respectively, in the first seven months of the year, said the report. Average employment in Canada, meanwhile, is up one per cent. And the report said Alberta’s economy is projected to grow 3.2 per cent this year compared with the national projection of two per cent.