Newfoundland and Labrador - Economy

Economy

All currency is in Canadian dollars.

For many years, Newfoundland and Labrador had experienced a depressed economy. Following the collapse of the cod fishery during the early 1990s, the province saw record unemployment rates and the population decreased by roughly 60,000. However due to a major energy and resources boom, the provincial economy has seen a major turnaround in recent years. Unemployment rates decreased, the population stabilized, and even saw some moderate growth. The province has even recorded record surpluses, which has rid it of its status as a "have not" province.

Economic growth, gross domestic product (GDP), exports and employment resumed in 2010, after suffering the impacts of the late-2000s recession. Total capital investment in the province grew to $6.2 billion, an increase of 23.0% compared to 2009. GDP reached $28.1 billion, compared to $25.0 billion in 2009.

Service industries accounted for the largest share of GDP, especially financial services, health care and public administration. Other significant industries are mining, oil production and manufacturing. The total workforce in 2010 was 263,800 people. Per capita GDP in 2008 was 61,763, higher than the national average and third only to Alberta and Saskatchewan out of Canadian provinces.

Mines in Labrador, the iron ore mine at Wabush/Labrador City, and the nickel mine in Voisey's Bay produced a total of $3.3 billion worth of ore in 2010. A mine at Duck Pond (30 km (18 mi) south of the now-closed mine at Buchans), started producing copper, zinc, silver and gold in 2007 and prospecting for new ore bodies continues. Mining accounted for 3.5% of the provincial GDP in 2006. The province produces 55% of Canada’s total iron ore. Quarries producing dimension stone such as slate and granite, account for less than $10 million worth of material per year. Oil production from offshore oil platforms on the Hibernia, White Rose and Terra Nova oil fields on the Grand Banks was of 110,000,000 barrels (17,000,000 m3), which contributed to more than 15% of the province's GDP in 2006. Total production from the Hibernia field from 1997 to 2006 was 733,000,000 barrels (116,500,000 m3) with an estimated value of $36 billion. This will increase with the inclusion of the latest project, Hebron. Remaining reserves are estimated at almost 2 billion barrels (320×10^6 m3) as of December 31, 2006. Exploration for new reserves is ongoing.

On June 16, 2009, Danny Williams announced a tentative agreement to expand the Hibernia Oil Field. The government negotiated a 10-per-cent equity stake in the Hibernia South expansion which will add an estimated $10 billion to Newfoundland and Labrador's treasury.

The fishing industry remains an important part of the provincial economy, employing roughly 20,000 and contributing over $440 million to the GDP. The combined harvest of fish such as cod, haddock, halibut, herring and mackerel was 150,000 tonnes (165,000 tons) valued at about $130 million in 2006. Shellfish, such as crab, shrimp and clams, accounted for 195,000 tonnes (215,000 tons) with a value of $316 million in the same year. The value of products from the seal hunt was $55 million. Aquaculture is a new industry for the province, which in 2006 produced over 10,000 tonnes of Atlantic salmon, mussels and steelhead trout worth over $50 million.

Newsprint is produced by one paper mill in Corner Brook with a capacity of 420,000 tonnes (462,000 tons) per year. The value of newsprint exports varies greatly from year to year, depending on the global market price. Lumber is produced by numerous mills in Newfoundland.

Apart from seafood processing, paper manufacture and oil refining, manufacturing in the province consists of smaller industries producing food, brewing and other beverage production, and footwear.

Agriculture in Newfoundland is limited to areas south of St. John's, near Deer Lake and in the Codroy Valley. Potatoes, rutabagas, turnips, carrots and cabbage are grown for local consumption. Poultry and eggs are also produced. Wild blueberries, partridgeberries (lingonberries) and bakeapples (cloudberries) are harvested commercially and used in jams and wine making. Dairy production is also another huge part of the Newfoundland Agriculture Industry.

Tourism is also a significant contributor to the province's economy. In 2006 nearly 500,000 non-resident tourists visited Newfoundland and Labrador, spending an estimated $366 million. Tourism is most popular throughout the months of June–September, as these months are the warmest months of the year.

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