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January 26, 2021, 2:38 pm

Northern Development Report Outlines COVID-19 Impacts; Looks at Post-Pandemic Future

Northern Development
PRINCE GEORGE – The 2020 State of the North Economic Report released January 25 features industry overviews, updates on major projects and economic analysis on Northern B.C.’s four regions.
The report, which was independently researched by MNP, indicates the short-term outlook for the northern economy remains uncertain due to the indeterminate long-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Overall, the impact of COVID-19 has been more moderate in the North as the region’s economy is less reliant on the hospitality and recreation sectors. As of October 2020, employment levels were down three per cent year-over-year compared with five per cent in B.C. as a whole.

The report also provides insight into the impact of COVID-19 on key industries including forestry and hospitality, and how the workforces at major projects were affected. Between February 2020 and May 2020 employment levels declined across all industry sectors as over 12,000 individuals lost their jobs in the region.

While the Cariboo region, including Prince George, did not experience the same declines as the rest of B.C., the Northeast and North Nechako region saw more significant decreases due to layoffs at major infrastructure projects.

“This year’s report is very different from previous reports in that we’ve never had to predict how a pandemic might affect our economy as we move into the future,” said Joel McKay, CEO, Northern Development Initiative Trust. “However, for Northern B.C., the report does an excellent job of providing valuable economic data that we believe can help inform policy, investment decisions and economic plans.”

View the 2020 State of the North Economic Report.

Media Contact

Holly Plato
Director, Communications and Marketing
Northern Development Initiative Trust

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