Construction of mixed residential and commercial development, Victoria B.C., May 2019. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)

B.C.’s post-pandemic economy to recover in 2022, economists say

Central 1 Credit Union analyzes impact of COVID-19

B.C.’s economy is expected to shrink by 6.1 per cent in 2020, getting back to pre-pandemic output part-way through 2022 with the help of housing and industrial construction, Canada’s credit union organization says.

Central 1 Credit Union’s latest forecast has the B.C. economy growing by 4.0 per cent in 2021, then recovering the rest of the 2020 loss in 2022 as service business rebounds more slowly than goods production. Unemployment is expected to remain at around 10 per cent by the end of 2020, gradually improving to six per cent by 2023.

“Ongoing recovery is set to persist through 2021 and beyond, aided by major construction projects such as the LNG Canada project and the Site C dam, which were initiated prior to the pandemic, but will remain below pre-pandemic levels into 2022,”said Bryan Yu, deputy chief economist for Central 1, releasing the forecast Sept. 9.

Statistics Canada’s labour force survey finds that B.C. has recouped more than half of the 400,000 jobs lost from February through April, with re-opening of businesses closed by the pandemic bringing back mainly part-time employment. Retail spending returned to near February levels in July, with pent-up demand for vehicles, clothing and other discretionary purchases likely a factor, Yu said.

RELATED: Bank of Canada warns of ‘slow, choppy’ recovery

RELATED: B.C. shuts night clubs, alcohol sales after 10 p.m.

A surge in lumber demand and prices has helped B.C. recover more quickly than Alberta and Ontario, which are more dependent on energy and automotive production, among the hardest-hit sectors.

“The housing cycle has been a huge surprise from what was anticipated at the early stages of the pandemic, and is likely propelled by a combination of pent-up demand in March and April, substantial cuts to mortgage rates and a shift in consumer preferences given the advent of work from home and constraints to leisure activities,” Yu said.

As the B.C. forest industry struggles with log supply and costs, other factors are expected to slow the housing market. Housing stars are forecast to decline by more than 20 per cent this year, and rise only modestly after that, with fewer pre-sales and a slowing of B.C.’s population growth due to low travel and immigration.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Proposed Sidney cannabis store wins favour with public, businesses

Of 348 received submissions, 311 favour cannabis store proposed for 2400-block of Beacon Avenue

Victoria police make arrest in Centennial Square stabbing

One man was left with non-life-threatening injuries Saturday morning

Lamborghini driver slapped with nearly $1,000 in fines while speeding in Central Saanich

Vehicle impounded by Central Saanich police, 11 points issued

Saanich School District set to review its boundaries

Goal is to correct imbalances in school populations

New crop of hand-crafted hearts popping up across Saanich

Community arts program promotes wellness, sends message of caring from people of all ages

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

SOOKE HISTORY: Alleged bootlegger has day in court

Blackberry wine confiscated at home

POLL: Do you agree with the decision to call a provincial election for Oct. 24?

British Columbians will put their social distancing skills to the test when… Continue reading

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Sooke’s Sheringham Distillery wins gold award

Local business wins Product of Year at B.C. Food and Beverage Awards

B.C. marriage annulled because husband was unable to have sex with wife

Husband did not disclose any sexual health concerns to his wife prior to marriage

White Rock’s namesake spray-painted with Black Lives Matter slogan

Vandalism occurred sometime between Friday and Saturday

Most Read