Strength in numbers

Manitobans can rest easy with their current economy despite previous downfalls and the turmoil of the world’s economic situation. Manitoba Economic Highlights show that our province has the second best average of annual growth of 1.9 per cent over five years in comparison to the rest of Canada, which is at 1.2 per cent.

The Federal Agency states that Manitoba recently added 7,300 new full-time jobs, which drove down the recent unemployment hike to 5.4 per cent.

Wayne Simpson, professor of economics at the U of M, said that there are two parts to population growth. The first part is the natural increase rate, which takes births and deaths into consideration. The second part is migration, which is the main reason for the current population increase. Manitoba is currently offering many jobs, the reason that many immigrants are coming to Canada, especially Manitoba.

“One of the things [contributing to population growth] is an increase in migration to Manitoba, a lot of which has been the PNP [The Manitoban Provincial Nominee Program],” said Simpson

The Manitoban Provincial Nominee Program was created to give immigrants a certificate that allows the process of permanent residency to speed up.

Effects of rapid expansion can be found in Winnipeg. Simpson said there are advantages to becoming a bigger city. It creates a larger labour market, which in turn creates more wealth per capita.

According to the Manitoba Bureau of Statistics, Manitoba’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has risen by 2.2 per cent. Simpson explained that GDP is a measure of an economy’s wealth and the goods and services produced within a province. This amount would be portioned out to people in terms of their incomes. It creates higher wages and generally a higher sense of well-being.

Simpson said that of this is interconnected with the job market. There is an increase in jobs available with higher wages, yet at the same time it creates more competition. There is a lot of competition in a city like Toronto, but also a lot more opportunity. More opportunity and competition will be created in cities like Winnipeg and Brandon as they continue to grow. As this occurs, people start capitalizing on other ways to generate income, which also positively adds to the economy and GDP.

The current benefits of the Manitoban economy, especially in Winnipeg, are attracting people to migrate to the city or elsewhere in the province. The economy is strong and diversified, which is causing people to stay. The current mass construction is proof of all this, and also another huge source of employment.

Moving all depends on what an individual is looking for in terms of their goals and aspirations. Manitoba may not be the first choice when thinking about a place to call home but, judging by the current economy; many people feel that it is a great choice.