OTTAWA, Feb. 24 /CNW/ - The booming Northern mining industry will power
economic growth in all three Canadian territories this year, according
to The Conference Board of Canada's Territorial Outlook-February 2011.
"Thanks to growing demand for raw materials, the territories have forged
ahead and managed to avoid the difficulties marking most provincial
economies," said Marie-Christine Bernard, Associate Director. "The
mining industry in each of the territories is expected to post
double-digit growth this year."
A recovery in global demand for diamonds was instrumental to the
Northwest Territories' (N.W.T.) rebound in 2010 and will continue to
drive economic growth this year. Real gross domestic product (GDP) is
forecast to increase by 5.6 per cent in 2011. However, N.W.T.'s economy
is expected to contract in 2012, due mainly to the completion of
open-pit mining at Diavik. As the mine transitions into an entirely
underground operation, output in non-metal mining and sectors that rely
on the diamond industry are expected to decline in 2012. With building
activity at the Diavik and Snap Lake mines ending in 2010 and public
infrastructure spending expected to ease, output in the construction
sector is not expected to grow over the next two years.
Yukon is displaying resilience to global economic fluctuations. With
three hard rock mines in operation, the mining industry is expected to
expand by 26.4 per cent over the next two years. The Mayo B hydro
expansion will provide a boost to the construction sector in 2011.
Improved employment prospects will support growth in the wholesale and
retail sectors. Overall, real GDP in Yukon is forecast to grow 3.9 per
cent in 2011, with similar growth expected in 2012.
The opening of the Medowbank gold mine helped Nunavut's economy bounce
back in 2010. Production at the mine is set to increase to 400,000
ounces this year, resulting in a 24.4 per cent increase in metal mining
output. Nunavut's booming mining industry will boost real GDP by 3.3
per cent in 2011, despite the moderate growth of 1.9 per cent forecast
for the public sector, which makes up over 40 per cent of the economy.
Economic growth is expected to ease starting in 2012, until the
construction of the Meliadine West mine gets underway in 2014.
This forecast is produced as part of the Conference Board's Centre for
the North. Its main purpose is to work with Aboriginal leaders,
businesses, governments, communities, educational institutions, and
other organizations to provide insights into how sustainable prosperity
can be achieved in the North. Over its five-year mandate, the Centre
for the North will define strategies, policies and practices needed to
transform that vision into reality.
SOURCE CONFERENCE BOARD OF CANADA
For further information:
Brent Dowdall, Media Relations, Tel.: 613- 526-3090 ext. 448