indicatorThe Owl

Some industries yet to catch-up

GDP growth in Alberta since COVID

By Rob Roach, ATB Economics 12 May 2023 1 min read

Alberta’s economy took a nose dive in 2020 due to the double whammy of the pandemic and oil price crash.

The good news is that, as of last year, Alberta’s real GDP had recovered from the losses sustained in 2020. Alberta’s total economic output was 1.3% higher in 2022 than in 2019.

But, not all industries have made up the ground they lost during the first year of the pandemic.

On the positive side of the ledger, the real GDP generated by Alberta’s finance and insurance sector was 11.8% higher in 2022 than in 2019 and our primary agriculture and forestry sector was 10.9% higher (see the chart below).

Because it is the largest sector* in Alberta, it’s good to see oil and gas extraction’s real output up by 4.9% compared to 2019. Output in the oil and gas support services sector was, however, down by 3.1%.

Other key industries in Alberta that are behind where they stood in 2018 include manufacturing (-4.2%), accommodation and food services (-10.4%), and arts, entertainment and recreation (-25.4%).

*Lumping in a small amount of mining and quarrying activity, Statistics Canada estimates that the mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction sector and related support services generated about 21% of Alberta’s nominal GDP on average over the 2019-2022 period (see Table 36-10-0400-01). Because the shares of real GDP by industry at the provincial level do not precisely add up to aggregate GDP, nominal GDP is considered a better estimate of the relative size of industries.

Answer to the previous trivia question: Cathode active materials are chemicals found in the rechargeable lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles and renewable energy storage.

Today’s trivia question: According to the North American Industry Classification System used by Statistics Canada, are sawmills included in the forestry sector or the manufacturing sector?

Management of companies and enterprises is a small sector, but it is the furthest behind where it was in 2019

Management of companies and enterprises is a small sector, but it is the furthest behind where it was in 2019

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