(14 April 2010)
Economy Shows Continued Strength
One of Saskatchewan’s biggest newspapers reported recently that our province’s economy is in ‘overdrive.’ You don’t have to look far to see why. Seven recent reports on the Canadian economy all show that Saskatchewan’s economy continues to perform strongly in 2010, citing business optimism, employment opportunities and construction as key indicators. The rise in economic growth, construction and business confidence means more opportunities for Saskatchewan families.
All of these recent reports completely contradict the NDP position that the Saskatchewan economy is in “free fall.” Their repeated bleak assessments of our province only show how out of touch their leader and their party is with the reality of the new Saskatchewan. By moving this province forward, the hard-work people of Saskatchewan have shown the NDP, and the world, that ours is the economy that could.
- According to the Canadian Federation of Independent Business’ Monthly Business Barometer, 55 per cent of Saskatchewan small business owners are optimistic about the year ahead, compared to 36 per cent nationally.
- The Conference Board of Canada reports that a strengthening provincial economy will increase the number of jobs by 12,000 over the next two years. The Conference Board also says Saskatchewan people will see the fastest increase in wages and salaries per employee.
- More than 10,000 new jobs were posted to SaskJobs.ca in March, a 10.3 per cent increase over last year and the highest monthly job total in 15 months.
- The latest Statistics Canada labour report shows the Saskatchewan economy has grown by 9,000 jobs over the last year, and our unemployment rate remains the lowest in the country.
- Statistics Canada also reports building permits were up 19.5 per cent in February 2010 compared to February 2009. Residential permits were up 43.8 per cent; non-residential permits increased 5.6 per cent.
- Recently released stats on housing starts are another sign that our economic recovery is in full swing - Urban housing starts were up by 176 per cent in the first three months of 2010. That’s the highest percentage increase in Canada.
- Saskatchewan's exports of goods totaled nearly $2 billion in February 2010 - an increase of 22.6 per cent over the same period in 2009.
On March 24, 2010, your Saskatchewan Party government announced its third consecutive balanced budget, which was achieved through a combination of reduced spending, caution on revenue projects and a commitment to living within our means. With spending down, historic debt payments, and record tax cuts remaining in place, there is a positive balance of $500 million in the provincial saving account.
Our government recognizes that the path we have chosen is not the easy path, but it is the path that will keep our province’s economic momentum strong and moving forward. It is the right path for the new Saskatchewan – the growing, optimistic, and self-assured Saskatchewan. We are looking to the future with confidence and hope.
If you have a question about this Legislative Report or any other matter, just Contact Don.
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