Local businesses from around Vancouver Island gathered today to hear about British Columbia’s economic success and progress made to-date thanks to the BC Jobs Plan as well as for an announcement on a new Labour Market Partnership Project with Vancouver Island manufacturers.
The announcement was made by Greg Kyllo, Parliamentary Secretary for the BC Jobs Plan to the Minister of Jobs, Tourism, and Skills Training and Michelle Stilwell, MLA for Parksville-Qualicum and Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation at Inuktun Services Ltd., a designer and manufacturer of modular robotic systems.
The Vancouver Island Manufacturers Sector Engagement Project will bring together Vancouver Island employers and associations that are committed to addressing common workforce challenges in the manufacturing sector. This will help ensure that British Columbia and Vancouver Island have the workforce needed so that manufacturing companies can hire for jobs of the future. Government has committed $30,000 for the project, funded through the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement (LMDA).
The Government of British Columbia also released the BC Jobs Plan 4-Year Progress Update today, which shows B.C.’s economic performance is reaching record levels. The BC Jobs Plan was launched in 2011 as government’s strategy to build on the strengths of our key sectors and our educated and skilled workforce, to grow the province’s economy and promote job creation.
The BC Jobs Plan set targets across eight sectors: Agrifoods, Forestry, International Education, Mining and Energy, Natural Gas, Technology and Green Economy, Tourism and Transportation. The BC Jobs Plan expanded in 2014 to include four cross sectors: Aboriginal Peoples and First Nations, International Trade, Manufacturing and Small Business.
The BC Jobs Plan has achieved and surpassed much of what it set out to do. Economic statistics show the BC Jobs Plan is working to grow our economy and support long term job creation. Major Canadian banks and the Conference Board of Canada expect that British Columbia will lead the country in economic growth in 2015 and 2016.
Employment, exports and B.C.'s Gross Domestic Product have reached record highs and B.C. has recorded growth of more than 126,800 jobs since the launch of the jobs plan. Currently, a record 2.3 million people are working in B.C. and the province has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country, trending well below the national average.
The 4-Year Progress Update highlights four growing areas of the economy showing strong potential including: the apparel sector; film, television and digital media production; the craft beer industry; and financial services. It also includes a regional spotlight to showcase the diversity and growth of various sectors in the Vancouver Island/Coast region.
The complete BC Jobs Plan 4-Year Update can be found here: www.BCJobsPlan.ca
It includes progress made on the original Jobs Plan targets and features BC Job Makers – people and companies who drive the B.C. economy and create jobs.
Michelle Stilwell, Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation –
“Employment, exports and our Gross Domestic Product have reached record highs. B.C.’s diverse economy has continued to grow with the development of new mines; continued progress in the LNG industry; an expanded agrifoods sector; a booming technology sector; and continued growth of our vibrant tourism sector.”
Greg Kyllo, Parliamentary Secretary for the BC Jobs Plan –
“While growth has slowed in much of the rest of Canada, B.C. is expected to lead the country in economic growth over the next two years. The BC Jobs Plan has achieved and surpassed much of what it set out to do: enable job creation, expand markets for B.C.’s goods and services, and strengthen B.C.’s infrastructure to facilitate the movement of goods to market – while at the same time reducing red tape and other barriers for our key sectors.”
CEO, Inuktun Services –
“Inuktun Services has grown from a company of five in 1989 to employ more than 50 people with the support of BC Government programs. We have used the Bladerunners Program through the Nanaimo Youth Services Association to hire youth who may not have had the chance to transition into the workplace so easily on their own.
“The Canada-BC Job Grant cost-sharing program helped Inuktun invest in training for current employees while the BC Provincial Nominee program was instrumental in accelerating work visas for skilled employees who make significant contributions to the provincial economy. Future plans include international expansion and creating more jobs.”
- B.C. now has record employment, with 2.3 million British Columbians working.
- Since the launch of the Jobs Plan, B.C. has added 126,800 jobs, with all of this growth in full-time employment.
- Gross Domestic Product has increased by $16.5 billion, or 8%, since the launch of the Jobs Plan in 2011.
- B.C. reached its goal to be top two in GDP growth in Canada by 2015 and is expected to be one of the economic leaders in the country in 2015 and 2016.
- B.C.’s year-over-year employment growth rate is the highest in the country at 2.6% (Nov 2014 – Nov 2015).
- The province’s unemployment rate is among the lowest in the country at 6.2% – well below the national average of 7.1%.
- By 2024, B.C. is expecting up to one million job openings.
- B.C.’s exports have increased by 9.5% since 2011.
- Motion picture industry production spending exceeded $2 billion in 2014-15, supporting an estimated 20,000 jobs.
- Craft beer sales have tripled in the last five years in B.C. totalling $205 million in 2014.
- B.C.’s financial services industry including (banks, credit unions, insurance companies and securities and commodity exchanges) accounts for more than $12 billion of GDP and employs almost 89,000 people.
- B.C.’s apparel industry generates about 7,000 jobs and totals $3 billion in exported goods to more than 50 countries
- To find out more about the BC Jobs Plan, visit: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/
- For more information on B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint, visit: https://www.workbc.ca/skills
- Additional audio clips of Minister Stilwell are available for download. For information on: