The Conference Board of Canada has once again ranked Victoria dead last in its comparison of the economic growth of Canada’s largest cities.
In its Economic Insights into 13 Canadian Metropolitan Cities publication released Friday, the board ranked Victoria last, with projected 0.1 per cent GDP growth for 2013. That’s the same position the city occupied for 2012, when it clocked in with 0.3 per cent growth.
The bright spot in the report is that Victoria is projected to achieve 2.3 per cent growth between 2014 and 2017, taking it up to 11th place in the pecking order.
The board also said lower housing starts had taken a bite out of construction activity, and declining consumer spending hurt other services-producing industries, especially wholesale and retail trade.
It did see some light amid the doom and gloom, but the board suggested a strong performance by the manufacturing sector has not been enough to offset sluggishness elsewhere.The rebound between 2014 and 2017 is expected to come from improved performance in construction activity and better results from the services sector.
While Victoria may be lagging the rest of the country, the West fared well in the report. The top five cities (by GDP growth) were all from this side of the country. Saskatoon, projected to realize 5.2 per cent GDP growth this year, topped the list, followed by Regina (5.0), Edmonton (4.2), Calgary (3.3) and Vancouver (2.2).
British Columbia is expected to realize 1.5 per cent growth this year, according to the report, and improve to 3.0 per cent over the next four years. The country as a whole is slated for 1.7 per cent growth this year and 2.5 per cent between 2014 and 2017.