Ontario exports to decline in 2007, level off in 2008, says EDC

    OTTAWA, April 26 /CNW Telbec/ - Ontario's export growth is forecast to
decline by 3 per cent in 2007 before flattening out in 2008, according to a
provincial export outlook by Export Development Canada (EDC). EDC Economics
also forecasts that the auto and forestry sectors will begin to emerge from
the bottom of their business cycles through 2008.
    "Ontario exporters will continue to struggle in the near term. This
year's 3 per cent decline comes on the heels of a 1.4 per cent drop in 2006,
as U.S. weakness hits exports of motor vehicles, forestry and consumer
products, and industrial goods," said Stephen Poloz, Senior Vice-President of
Corporate Affairs and Chief Economist. "2008 will see exports level off, as US
economic performance picks up."
    The auto sector accounts for more than 41 per cent of Ontario's exports,
and is projected to fall a further 6 per cent in 2007 as U.S. auto sales fall
to a 9-year low. In 2008, EDC expects auto exports to stagnate, as the US auto
market begins a modest recovery and the restructuring of domestic auto
producers nears completion. Strong global demand for industrial inputs and
robust commodity prices supported exports of industrial goods, including
metals, chemicals and plastics, in 2006. However, industrial export receipts
are expected to post zero growth in 2007 and a 1 per cent decline in 2008 as
commodity prices ease further. The industrial goods sector accounts for 26 per
cent of Ontario's exports.
    Nationally, Canadian export volumes are forecast to decline by 1 per cent
in 2007 before rising by a modest 1 per cent in 2008. Canadian economic growth
is forecast to remain stable at 2.3 per cent in 2007 and 2.9 per cent in 2008.
Internationally, EDC is forecasting 4.5 per cent global economic growth in
2007 and 4.6 per cent growth in 2008. EDC's Global Export Forecast is
available at http://www.edc.ca/gef.

    EDC is Canada's export credit agency, offering innovative commercial
solutions to help Canadian exporters and investors expand their international
business. EDC's knowledge and partnerships are used by 7,000 Canadian
companies and their global customers in up to 200 markets worldwide each year.
EDC is financially self-sustaining and is a recognized leader in financial
reporting, economic analysis and has been named one of Canada's Top 100
Employers for six consecutive years.

For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Phil Taylor, Public Affairs,
Export Development Canada, (613) 291-1276, ptaylor@edc.ca

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