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Human Resources, Labour and Employment
January 14, 2011

Record-high Employment Levels Reached in 2010

According to the latest labour force figures, Newfoundland and Labrador led all Canadian provinces in employment growth in 2010, which attests to the province’s strong economic and fiscal foundation, the Honourable Tom Marshall, Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board and the Honourable Darin King, Minister of Human Resources, Labour and Employment, said today.

“Employment was up by nearly 8,000 in Newfoundland and Labrador during 2010 as compared to the year before, and reached an all-time high,” said Minister Marshall. “This speaks volumes about the employment and economic growth we are experiencing, as well as the measures that our government has taken to further stimulate the economy.”

Employment during 2010 averaged 222,800, up 3.7 per cent compared to 2009, with most of the gains coming in full-time employment. The overall rate of employment growth in Newfoundland and Labrador last year was more than double the national growth rate of 1.6 per cent, and represents the strongest performance among provinces.

Also in 2010, Newfoundland and Labrador’s annual average labour force increased 2.2 per cent to 259,900. The participation rate rose by almost one per cent to stand at 60.2 per cent, which is the highest annual participation rate on record for the province. The unemployment rate declined by 1.2 percentage points to 14.3 per cent.

These results are from Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey for December 2010, which also showed that seasonally adjusted employment in Newfoundland and Labrador grew by approximately 9,900 last month compared with December 2009.

“The employment gains our province experienced last year were more than enough to recover the downturn in employment that resulted in 2009 from the global recession,” said Minister King. “This is a good sign that our economy is once again picking up steam as we pull away from the recession. The number of people participating in the labour force has gone up, incomes are rising, and business investment is extremely strong, all of which signals a healthy economy and confidence that opportunities in the province’s workforce are on the rise.”

Minister Marshall added, “Our government will continue to support and build on these opportunities, by ensuring that our taxation is competitive and by strategically investing in infrastructure, economic development and other areas that generate jobs and prosperity for people throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.”

While final numbers are not yet available, Newfoundland and Labrador’s economic growth in 2010 was expected to exceed all other provinces, and the economy is expected to have another solid year in 2011. The Provincial Government forecasts this province’s real Gross Domestic Product will expand by another 5.4 per cent. Employment is forecast to rise by 2.2 per cent and the unemployment rate is anticipated to fall to 13.9 per cent. Personal income is expected to rise by 5.8 per cent and retail sales are forecast to rise 4.9 per cent. Investment is forecast to rise significantly again, increasing by 25 per cent.

The ministers pointed to strategic investments and policies by the Provincial Government that have contributed to growth, including $48.5 million in additional tax reductions and another $1 billion for infrastructure under Budget 2010: The Right Investments – For Our Children and Our Future.

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Media contacts:

Mark King
Director of Communications
Department of Finance
709-729-6830, 699-3454
Bradley Power
Director of Communications
Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment
709-729-0753, 699-5707

2011 01 14                                                                          9:45 a.m.

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