Nunavut leads Canada in GDP growth as change decelerates nationwide 
Nunavut leads Canada in GDP growth as change decelerates nationwide 

While GDP grew in every province in Canada except Newfoundland and Labrador, it slowed drastically compared to the year prior in most jurisdictions.

Across all industries, GDP grew by 1.2% in 2023 in Canada, according to data released by Statistics Canada on Wednesday. GDP grew by 3.9% in 2022 and 5.3% in 2021.

Of all provinces and territories, Nunavut saw the largest increase, where GDP increased by 3.4% in 2023. 

“Although record population growth helped spur economic activity, tight monetary policy, persistent inflation, and several climate change-related events constrained output growth across Canada in 2023,” read the report.

No climate change-related events were highlighted in the report or its accompanying data.

Despite Nunavut recording the largest percentage increase in GDP, Ontario, with a growth rate of only 1.6%, remained the largest overall contributor to Canada’s economic growth, accounting for almost half of the total increase in national GDP in 2023.

British Columbia also saw an increase in GDP of 1.6%, making the province the second-largest contributor to national economic growth, followed by Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Quebec, which saw their province’s GDP increase by 1.5%, 1.6%, and 0.2%, respectively.

GDP decreased in Newfoundland and Labrador by almost 2.5% and in the Northwest Territories by less than 0.1%. 

Newfoundland and Labrador had the largest negative effect on national economic output for the third time in six years.

Meanwhile, the construction sector was the most volatile industry in 2023. 

Lower activity in the construction sector was the main detractor of growth in five provinces: Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, and Alberta.

Conversely, construction was the largest contributor to growth in Nunavut, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, and the Northwest Territories.

In Nunavut, construction of a new gold mine helped engineering construction, which increased by 68%, more than offset the declines in residential and non-residential construction.

Residential construction decreased in every single province and territory in 2023. Six jurisdictions saw double-digit declines in output. Home building decreased in Prince Edward Island by 15.5%, in Quebec by 19.1%, and in British Columbia by 12.7%.

The Liberals have previously argued that high immigration levels are necessary to keep the economy supported and important labour to help the housing industry. Despite this, 75% of Canadians believe that high immigration levels are fuelling the housing crisis.

“We have to get away from this notion that immigrants are the major cause of housing pressures and the increase in home prices,” claimed Immigration Minister Marc Miller.

Canada’s largest housing markets also saw declines in the offices of real estate agents and brokers and activities related to real estate. Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia saw decreases of 13.9%, 12.7%, and 10.5%, respectively. 

“On an annual basis, activity was down in all areas as potential buyers contended with higher borrowing costs,” said Statistics Canada.

2023’s final GDP data is expected to be released in November. The data will include more comprehensive details, including income and expenditures. The future release will also offer revised estimates for 2021 and 2022.

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