CPABC: Employment in the Cariboo region holds steady in 2023

PRINCE GEORGE, British Columbia, Nov. 28, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- According to BC Check-Up: Work, an annual report by the Chartered Professional Accountants of British Columbia (CPABC) on labour market trends across the province, the Cariboo had 87,800 employed residents in October 2023, which was little changed from a year ago.

“We didn’t see much change in employment levels over the past year,” said Corey Naphtali, CPA, CA, partner at KPMG Canada in Prince George. “That said, there were some pretty significant shifts at the industry level.”

As of October 2023, there were 62,200 people employed in the services sector, marking a 9.1 per cent decline from October 2022. At the same time, the goods-sector expanded by 27.5 per cent, led by the construction industry which added 4,000 workers year-over-year.

“We saw pretty substantial losses in both the trade and health care industries, with each shrinking by over 20 per cent,” continued Naphtali. “On a positive note, the Cariboo’s construction industry rebounded in 2023, at a time when the province as a whole is struggling to provide suitable infrastructure to support a growing population.”

The region’s unemployment rate was 5.7 per cent in October 2023, up 1.2 percentage points from October 2022, but still below the pre-pandemic rate. Meanwhile, the labour participation rate – the proportion of working age people who were working, or looking for work – in the region was 64.0 per cent, 4.5 percentage points lower than it was in October 2019.

“Although the unemployment rate went up, the Cariboo is still experiencing a tight labour market, with many businesses struggling to recruit workers,” concluded Naphtali. “There is an immediate need to address current labour shortages, and we also need to be concerned about a large proportion of our workforce looking to retire in the coming years. Attracting newcomers to the region is going to be paramount for the Cariboo’s prosperity.”

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About CPA British Columbia

The Chartered Professional Accountants of British Columbia (CPABC) is the training, governing, and regulatory body for over 39,000 CPA members and 6,000 CPA candidates and students. CPABC carries out its primary mission to protect the public by enforcing the highest professional and ethical standards and contributing to the advancement of public policy.


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