Western Economic Diversification Canada
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Key Economic Indicators - September

British Columbia Alberta Saskatchewan Manitoba Canada Last
Gross Domestic Product
Real GDP1 (2007 $billions, forecast) $214 $292 $58 $55 $1,673 2016 (f)
% ch. from year earlier 3.0% -2.0% 0.2% 2.1% 1.5%
Labour Market
Employment (SA, thousands) 2,386 2,251 569 634 18,050 Aug-16
Change from previous month -6.6 2.7 -0.4 -2.4 26.2
% ch. from previous month -0.3% 0.1% -0.1% -0.4% 0.1%
% ch. from year earlier 3.1% -2.3% -0.8% -0.3% 0.4%
Unemployment Rate (SA,%) 5.5% 8.4% 6.3% 5.9% 7.0% Aug-16
percentage points from previous month -0.1 -0.2 0.0 -0.3 0.1
percentage points from previous year -0.7 2.3 1.5 0.2 0
Regular EI beneficiaries (SA) 55,860 99,320 19,980 15,190 575,160 Jul-16
Change from previous month 4580 18,980 3590 100 24,420
% ch. from previous month 8.9% 23.6% 21.9% 0.7% 4.4%
% ch. from year earlier 1.0% 86.5% 40.3% 7.4% 4.9%
Average weekly earnings $915.49 $1,119.24 $974.44 $888.13 $954.61 Jul-16
Change from previous year $1.36 -$18.07 $10.08 $2.26 $1.04
CPI (y/y) 2.0% 0.7% 0.7% 1.1% 1.1% Aug-16
CPI (y/y) previous month 2.1% 0.7% 1.1% 1.5% 1.3% Jul-16
Consumers and Business
Retail Sales (SA, $millions) $6,256 $6,059 $1,550 $1,574 $44,139 Jul-16
% ch. from previous month 0.9% -0.8% -3.3% -0.9% -0.1%
% ch. from previous year 6.3% -5.0% 0.0% 2.0% 1.8%
Manufacturing Sales (SA, $millions) $3,791 $5,140 $1,120 $1,335 $50,672 Jul-16
% ch. from previous month 2.2% -1.5% -3.6% -3.1% 0.1%
% ch. from previous year 4.0% -11.3% -4.3% -5.2% -2.6%
Building Permits (SA, $millions) $981 $951 $158 $230 $6,470 Jul-16
% ch. from previous month -4.8% 7.4% -44.3% 17.6% 0.8%
% ch. from previous year -14.9% -31.7% -44.5% 25.5% -10.0%
Housing Starts (SAAR, thousands) 35 20 7 5 182 Aug-16
% ch. from previous month -10.4% -22.3% 11.9% -38.5% -6.3%
% ch. from previous year 29.3% -42.2% 51.7% 0.5% -14.7%
International Trade
Merchandise Exports ($millions) $3,282 $6,080 $2,166 $1,059 $35,653 Jul-16
% ch. from previous month 6.0% -1.2% 7.8% -5.0% -7.4%
% ch. from previous year 4.8% -28.0% -18.3% 3.1% -11.3%
Merchandise Imports ($millions) $4,256 $1,882 $797 $1,468 $41,847 Jul-16
% ch. from previous month 2.3% -5.4% -2.1% -15.8% -9.3%
% ch. from previous year -2.8% -22.3% -5.0% -19.4% -7.2%
Population (estimate) 4,720,932 4,249,842 1,146,655 1,308,912 36,155,487 Q2 2016
% ch. from previous year 1.0% 1.8% 1.4% 1.5% 1.1%
Largest Cities (CMAs) Vancouver (2,504,340) Calgary (1,439,756) Saskatoon (304,975) Winnipeg* (793,428) 2015
Victoria* (365,291) Edmonton* (1,363,277) Regina* (241,422)

* Provincial Capital

[1] Real GDP at basic prices, forecast (Conference Board of Canada Provincial Outlook Spring 2016)

SA - Seasonally adjusted

SAAR - Seasonally adjusted at annual rates

Sources: Statistics Canada and Conference Board of Canada

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Upcoming Events

Event Description Location Date
British Columbia
Moving TransLink Forward: 6 Months of Progress The Vancouver Board of Trade will host Kevin Desmond, President and CEO of TransLink, for a keynote address. Vancouver, BC Moving TransLink Forward:October 13, 2016
WE FOR SHE: Championing the Next Generation The Vancouver Board of Trade will host one of North America’s largest gatherings of women’s organizations, companies, experts, business leaders, advocates, and young women to focus on the economic impact of women in the province of BC. Vancouver, BC WE FOR SHE:October 14,2016
Tackling Canada’s productivity gap: It starts with entrepreneurs The Vancouver Board of Trade will host Michael Denham, President and CEO of the Business Development Bank of Canada, for a keynote address. Vancouver, BC Tackling Canada’s productivity gap:October 17, 2016
Not easy being green: How BC is reducing emissions and growing the economy The Vancouver Board of Trade will host BC Minister of Environment Mary Polak for a keynote address on her Ministry’s top priorities and the new Climate Leadership Plan. Vancouver, BC Not easy being green:October 20, 2016
2016 Vancouver Island Economic Summit The Vancouver Island Economic Alliance will host its annual Economic Summit. Nanaimo, BC 2016 Vancouver Island Economic Summit:October 26-27, 2016
BC Business Summit 2016 The Business Council of BC will host its annual BC Business Summit. This year’s event is entitled, BC 2035: A Vision for Economic Growth and Prosperity. Vancouver, BC BC Business Summit 2016:November 1, 2016
Western Innovation Forum 2016 The Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI) will host a conference aimed at connecting Western Canada's aerospace, marine, defence and security industries to investment, partnership and business opportunities. Vancouver, BC Western Innovation Forum 2016:November 8-9, 2016
Growing the Future Together: BC Agrifood and Seafood Conference The Province of BC will host an agrifood, seafood, and food processing sector conference, including producers, processors, retailers, institutional purchasers, transporters and agritech suppliers. Kelowna, BC Growing the Future Together:November 14-15, 2016
The New U.S. President: What it means for Canada The Vancouver Board of Trade will host this event featuring Gary Doer, Former Ambassador of Canada to the United States, and Gordon Giffin, Former United States Ambassador to Canada. Vancouver, BC The New U.S. President:November 18, 2016
Housing in Canada and the Imaginary City: Addressing Vulnerabilities, Data Gaps and Affordability The Vancouver Board of Trade will host Evan Siddall, President and CEO of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, for a keynote address. Vancouver, BC Housing in Canada and the Imaginary City:November 30, 2016
The Pipeline Gridlock Conference The Indian Resource Council is hosting a forum for industry, government, and Indigenous leaders to discuss challenges facing the pipeline industry and opportunities for Indigenous involvement in determining solutions. Calgary, AB The Pipeline Gridlock ConferenceOctober 3-4, 2016
CERI 2016 Electricity Conference, The Canadian Electricity Sector at a Crossroads: Exploring Alternative Paths The Canadian Energy Research Institute (CERI)’s 2016 Electricity Conference will focus on challenges and opportunities faced by Canada’s electricity sector over the next three decades, including greenhouse gases, technological developments, and uncertain fuel prices and environmental regulations. Calgary, AB The Canadian Electricity Sector at a Crossroads:October 3-4, 2016
Economic Society of Northern Alberta (ESNA) ESNA's monthly lunch hour speaker's series, featuring the Hon. Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities. Edmonton, AB Economic Society of Northern Alberta:October 11, 2016
Calgary Energy Roundtable A private sector forum founded by the Canada Europe Roundtable for Business that discusses Canada’s energy sector in the context of domestic and international oil and gas markets. Calgary, AB Calgary Energy Roundtable:October 12, 2016
FDI Canada Forum A conference exploring foreign direct investment (FDI) opportunities and policies in the context of the Canadian marketplace. Calgary, AB FDI Canada Forum:October 18-19, 2016
Startup Edmonton Launch Party Startup Edmonton will hold its third annual Edmonton Startup Week, featuring five days and more than 20 events dedicated to Edmonton’s startup community. Edmonton, AB Startup Edmonton Launch Party:October 20, 2016
ACAMP Seminar Series Presents: Autonomous Systems for Transportation This seminar series aimed at Alberta’s innovation community will provide information on Autonomous Systems for Transportation, new developments in the industry, and enable networking opportunities. Calgary, AB ACAMP Seminar Series Presents:October 25, 2016
Clean Tech – What does the future hold? A breakfast discussion held by the Leduc-Nisku Economic Development Association on opportunities in clean technology and how companies can get involved to provide services, support and manufacturing in this industry. Leduc, AB Clean Tech:October 26, 2016
Women Building Extraordinary Futures Hosted by Women Building Futures (WBF), this event will feature the launch of WBF’s new Strategic Plan, acknowledge WBF supporters, and celebrate the impacts of the outgoing President and CEO, JudyLynn Archer. Edmonton, AB Women Building Extraordinary Futures:October 27, 2016
ASTech Awards The 2016 ASTech Awards, held in conjunction with the Next Gen Innovators Showcase, highlight innovative projects in science and technology, as well as start-ups and science fair students. Edmonton, AB ASTech Awards:October 28, 2016
Petrochem Canada 2016 Conference A conference providing insights into Canada’s competitive advantage on the global petrochemical stage. Edmonton, AB Petrochem Canada 2016 Conference:November 1-2, 2016
Unmanned Systems Canada 2016 Annual Conference A conference bringing together industry, government, military and academia to promote the education and innovation of unmanned systems for use in air, land, and sea. Edmonton, AB Unmanned Systems Canada 2016 Annual Conference:November 1-3, 2016
Indigenous Innovation Summit A summit bringing together Canada’s social innovators, entrepreneurs and Indigenous leaders to share ideas and build new fields of innovation. Edmonton, AB Indigenous Innovation Summit:November 7-9, 2016
Calgary Economic Development’s 2017 Economic Outlook A presentation by the Chief Economist of ATB Financial, Todd Hirsch, and the Chief Economist of the Conference Board of Canada, Glen Hodgson, on the global, national, regional, and local economic forecasts for 2017. Calgary, AB Calgary Economic Development’s 2017 Economic Outlook:November 8, 2016
Startup Calgary Launch Party Startup Calgary’s annual Launch Party will introduce technology startups that have demonstrated product market fit and an ability to attract users or generate revenue. Calgary, AB Startup Calgary Launch Party:November 17, 2016
Aboriginal Connections Hosted by the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business and the Alberta Enterprise Group, this keynote address will provide an opportunity for business leaders across western Canada to learn from the experiences of Fort McKay First Nations Chief, Jim Boucher. Calgary, AB Aboriginal Connections:November 23, 2016
Creating the New Alberta Vision & Leadership Convention A convention featuring panelists from 18 Alberta industries and professions, including agriculture and food processing, transportation and logistics, health and biotech, tourism, manufacturing and export, and environment and cleantech, sharing innovative business ideas. Red Deer, AB Creating the New Alberta Vision:November 26, 2016
Pulse a Palooza – A celebration of the International Year of the Pulses 2016 The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization has designated 2016 as the International Year of the Pulses. Saskatchewan has been playing an ever-larger role in feeding pulses to the world, currently providing 30 to 40% of global pulses. Saskatoon, SK Pulse a Palooza:October 5, 2016
Community Futures 10th Annual Women’s Workshop The theme of this year’s workshop is “Volunteering in your community – making your community a better place to live.” La Ronge, SK Community Futures 10:October 6, 2016
First Nations Land Governance and Economic Development Conference A national land governance and economic development conference hosted by Saskatchewan First Nations Groups. Discussions will revolve around land use planning, successful joint ventures, and sustainable community development by First Nations. WD Saskatchewan Region A/ADM is a guest speaker. Saskatoon, SK First Nations Land Governance and Economic Development Conference:October 11-13, 2016
9th Women in Leadership Conference Features well known speakers from Saskatchewan who will talk about a host of topics ranging from adapting to transformation, striving for goals and knowing when to listen. The keynote speaker will be the Saskatchewan Minister of Central Services, the Hon. Christine Tell. Regina, SK 9th Women in Leadership Conference:October 13, 2016
Premier Brad Wall Address to the Regina Chamber of Commerce Premier of Saskatchewan, Brad Wall, will deliver a talk on a Saskatchewan plan to fight climate change as part of this Luncheon series. Regina, SK Premier Brad Wall Address:October 18, 2016
STEP 2016 Trade Conference and 20th Anniversary This conference is an opportunity for Saskatchewan exporters to network and learn about current trade activity and discuss the challenges and strengths facing them in today's global marketplace. Regina, SK STEP 2016 Trade Conference:October 18-19, 2016
ABEX Awards 2016 This year, the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce is celebrating the 33rd anniversary of the Achievement in Business Excellence (ABEX) Awards. The event celebrates the brightest and best in Saskatchewan's business community. Saskatoon, SK ABEX Awards 2016:October 22, 2016
Economic Developers Association of Canada 48th Annual Conference This event is titled “Change Agents”. The main topic is Economic Diversification: Strategies for Revitalizing Local Economies. Saskatoon, SK Economic Developers Association of Canada:October 22-25, 2016
Science, Technology, Innovation and Collaboration Awards (STIC) The STIC Awards celebrate the brightest minds in the Saskatoon Region and honours the people, projects, and products that contribute to Saskatoon’s world-class science and technology cluster. Saskatoon, SK Science, Technology, Innovation and Collaboration Awards:November 16, 2016
Canola Industry Meeting and Canola Innovation Day The event is for delegates to hear researchers and industry experts discuss the latest developments in the growing canola industry and recent developments in canola genomics. Saskatoon, SK Canola Industry Meeting:November 30-
December 1, 2016
23rd Annual Council for the Advancement of Native Development Officers (Cando) National Conference The conference includes Cando’s annual meeting and will focus on partnerships for prosperity: Change, Collaboration and Opportunity. Whitehorse, Yukon Cando:October 3-6, 2016
Manitoba Association of Business Economics (MABE) Economic Outlook Conference The conference includes an overview of national, provincial and local economic conditions combined with focused sessions on Indigenous Economic Growth, downtown development and consolidation in the agricultural sector. Winnipeg, MB MABENovember 3, 2016
Canadian Space Society Annual Summit Summit 2016 brings together academia, industry, and the public. The theme "At the Centre of It All" will focus on the unifying factors that bring Canada, and the rest of the world, together within the space industry. Winnipeg, MB Canadian Space Society Annual Summit:November 14-15, 2016
Western Business Outlook The Conference Board of Canada hosts the Western Business Outlook – Manitoba. Winnipeg, MB Western Business Outlook:November 24, 2016

Western Economic Diversification Canada

The role of Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) is to improve the long-term economic competitiveness of Western Canada by supporting programs and services that enhance innovation, business development, and community economic development. In addition, the department undertakes policy, advocacy and coordination activities in order to advance the interests of Western Canada in national economic decision-making.