June 14, 2016
Halifax’s economy has made gains in both growth and business confidence, reports the Halifax Partnership’s 2016 Halifax Index released today.
Halifax’s economy made a strong showing in 2015 with GDP growing by 1.9% to $18.3 billion and the city’s population growing by 1% to just under 418,000.
The Conference Board of Canada (CBoC) expects another strong year in 2016, projecting growth of 2.9% - the second fastest in Canada among the 28 cities covered in the CBoC’s Metropolitan Outlook. Growth is being driven by $125B in major projects in Atlantic Canada including shipbuilding, energy and new real estate developments.
In 2016, we are seeing considerable pickup in business confidence. Halifax businesses are showing increased optimism around both current and future prospects, and have improved their rating of Halifax as a place to do business.
“Halifax’s economy has seen steady progress in the last number of years,” says Ian Munro, Chief Economist for the Halifax Partnership. “Businesses are increasingly optimistic, with this year’s results from our Business Confidence Survey reaching their highest level since 2011.”
Both residential and non-residential construction saw considerable strength in 2015. Apartment unit starts reached near-record-high levels and investment in buildings increased by 22%.
“With the number of cranes around Halifax, we see the growth of our city first-hand,” says Munro. “It’s important we continue to work together as a community to ensure Halifax remains an attractive place to do live, work and do business.”
Also included in this year’s Halifax Index is a special analysis on rural Halifax. Halifax is known for its unique urban-rural lifestyle, with access to big city amenities mixed with a small town feel. Many people may not know, however, that Halifax has the largest share of population living in rural areas of all major Canadian cities.Approximately one in five Halifax residents live in a rural area.
Published annually by the Halifax Partnership, The Halifax Index is an in-depth analysis of Halifax’s economic and community progress benchmarked against five other cities – St. John’s, Quebec City, London, Regina, and Victoria – across a number of indicators. The Halifax Index reports on the strength of Halifax’s economy, the health of the community, and the sustainability of the environment as well as providing insights for actions that will strengthen and grow our city.
For highlights of results and to download the 2016 Halifax Index visit www.halifaxindex.com.