Northwest Unemployment Reached 23-Year Low in 2017, According to Report

Unemployment in the northwest is at a 23-year low, according to the annual report issued by the Chartered Professional Accountants of BC.

The association's "Regional Check-Up" says the northwest economy fared relatively well in 2017, thanks to gains in the goods sector, pushing the jobless rate down to 5.8 per cent, the lowest rate recorded in our region since 1995.

Smithers accountant Jeanne MacNeil says mining activity was robust, and production picked up at the mines and at the Rio Tinto smelter in Kitimat. 

While several major projects wrapped up last year, four new ones began construction, including the Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal project in Prince Rupert, the modernization of Northwest Community College's training facilities, Phase Three of the Northwest Regional Airport's expansion project, and upgrades to Highway 16.

This year got off to a rough start, with 11-hundred jobs lost in the goods sector, more than countering the one thousand jobs created in the service sector.