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Alberta’s economy in the global context

Alberta’s economy in the global context

Posted on: 1/29/2019 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

Alberta’s economy remains strong by global standards, despite the recession. Compared to the International Monetary Fund’s list of the world’s richest countries, the province sat in 9th place for gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in 2017, the latest year for which comparable data are available.

Alberta’s US$59,000 of economic output per person was just shy of the U.S. figure ($59,600) and ahead of Australia and Denmark ($55,200 and $52,900, respectively). Canada is in 17th spot with $43,600 of GDP per capita.

When we look at total GDP instead of GDP per capita, Alberta’s relatively small population pushes our spot down to 43rd (Canada is 10th). Still, the province has a larger economy than places with double the population, such as Portugal and Greece.

Alberta’s oil and gas sector is a dominating factor in its impressive standing on these lists, highlighting the sector’s need to overcome constraints due to a lack of pipelines.

Alberta’s small population also plays a role, as it requires us to export our bounty of natural resources and agricultural capacity to other parts of Canada and the world. There are billions of customers beyond our borders but only a few million within them.

20 richest economies in the world, graph

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