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Four prairie cities to lead Canada's economy

Published by Steve Coleman on January 11, 2012

Four western Canadian cities stand to gain the most economically over the next year.

The Conference Board of Canada says a reliance on the petroleum, mineral and agriculture sectors will benefit Saskatoon, Calgary, Edmonton and Regina the most of 27 Canadian cities analysed for their Metropolitan Outlook - Winter 2012.

"In spite of global economic turmoil, high prices for agricultural products, minerals and oil are likely to continue. Canada's prairie cities will reap the benefits of this global demand for commodities," said Mario Lefebvre, Director, Centre for Municipal Studies.

"The outlook is not as promising for cities in central and eastern Canada. The uncertain global economy, a continued slow recovery in the manufacturing sector and the windup of fiscal stimulus introduced by governments in recent years will hamper overall economic growth."

Predictions say Saskatoon will be up over the next year with four per cent more economic activity, down from the current 4.6 per cent.

Calgary will be at the top of the pack, the Conference Board says. The energy sector the money it creates is expected to boost GDP by 3.6 per cent in 2012 and 4.9 per cent in 2013.

Edmonton was a hotbed in 2011 with 40,000 new jobs creating a six per cent increase in the local economy. The energy sector is expected to help growth reach the 3.4 per cent mark in 2012.

Regina's economy is expected to fall from second to fourth this year. After growing five per cent in 2011, Regina is expected to go through another 2.9 per cent growth spurt.

The full report can be found at: http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/904073/alberta-and-saskatchewan-cities-to-lead-canadian-metropolitan-areas-in-economic-growth-in-2012

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