GE expansion, fresh New Flyer bus orders to help fuel economic growth in Manitoba city through 2017, Conference Board report says
OTTAWA—Winnipeg’s economy is poised for healthy growth over the next two years, and the city’s manufacturers will provide much of the heavy lifting, according to the Conference Board of Canada’s latest outlook.
“Winnipeg’s diverse economy continues to foster stable and solid growth, and generate a healthy number of new jobs,” said Alan Arcand, associate director of the Centre for Municipal Studies at think tank. “Ten-of-eleven industries are on track to contribute positively to economic growth this year, with specific bright spots including manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, and transportation and warehousing.”
The Conference Board expects the city’s real GDP to grow by 2.5 per cent this year and 2.3 per cent in 2017. While inching forward slower than some of Canada’s larger metro areas—Vancouver is expected to grow by four per cent this year, while Toronto will grow by 3.4 per cent, according to the Conference Board—Winnipeg’s growth will outpace other Prairie cities.
Helped along by the lower Loonie and “moderate” U.S. demand, the think tank pointed to a range of fresh New Flyer Industries Inc. bus manufacturing contracts and the expansion of GE’s engine testing facility as boons for the city. It also noted strong aerospace sector activity at Magellan Aerospace as a growth contributor.
Strength in the service sector and construction industries will also contribute to growth, the Conference Board said.
Unemployment in the city is expected to fall from six per cent in 2015 to 5.7 per cent in 2017.