B.C.’s exports are forecast to grow by six per cent next year, according to a new study by Export Development Canada — Canada’s export credit agency.
“It’s really a broad-based increase. We actually get some commodity price increases,” said Peter Hall, chief economist at Export Development Canada.
He says there are large volumes of metals and ores available and in 2016 he forecasts an increase in these sectors.
“Prices have been fake for the last seven years,” he said. “The market is trying to find equilibrium in pricing now.”
The report comes after Canada experienced two quarters of negative growth this year, largely due to the decline in the energy sector.
British Columbia’s diversified export economy helped reduce the impact of dropping oil prices this year, found the study.
“The energy sector [in B.C.] did get pummeled here like the rest of the country. It was other sectors that bailed the province out and kept things even this year,” said Hall, pointing to the forestry sector.
The Canadian dollar is expected to remain low along with the price of oil — forecast to remain below $60 a barrel through 2016.
But according to the reports findings, demand from the U.S. will mean things will get back to normal in B.C.
“What is great for B.C. exports it the revival of the housing market in the U.S.,” said Hall.
“It illustrates how suppressed the market has been in the past couple of years, all they are doing is returning to a very basic normal,” said Hall.