WINNIPEG, MB - Manitoba's thriving agri-food industry and well diversified industrial mix are driving a 12 per cent increase in the province's exports this year, followed by a 7 per cent increase in 2015, according to Export Development Canada's (EDC) recent economic forecast.
"The agri-food sector is by far the biggest player in Manitoba's economy, so it is encouraging to see the solid growth numbers there," said EDC Chief Economist Peter Hall. "This could just be a down payment on future growth, though, as increasing demand for high-quality foodstuffs in emerging markets suggests robust growth well into the future. But the agri-food sector isn't the whole story in Manitoba. Industrial manufacturing, metal mining, and energy are all showing that they can also generate double-digit increases."
The agri-food sector will see the most growth of all the province's export sectors in 2014, with a lofty 17 per cent increase. This is largely attributed to carry-over stock from 2013's record bumper crop, when agricultural yields skyrocketed due to ideal weather conditions. These yields are expected to drop back to normal levels in 2014.
"Cattle and hog exports are also doing their part to bolster the sector, posting double-digit growth this year," added Hall. "Strong international demand, lower feed costs, and record pork prices are driving the industry. Increased meat exports to emerging markets like China, where an increasingly hungry middle class is growing by roughly Canada's population every year, are also helping the sector along."
Moving into 2015, industrial manufacturing is projected to have the strongest growth of any sector, at 13 per cent. The main driver is the US economy, where recovery is creating a wide wave of demand. Housing starts are booming and builders are scrambling to build units to fill the growing void in the market, putting upward pressure on metals and woodworking machinery exports. Similar needs for machinery exist in the global agricultural industry.
"These needs are really driving growth in Manitoba's industrial machinery exports, and we believe it will be the province's export star next year," said Hall.
"Metal mining is also making a move within Manitoba's economy, as a number of operations are expanding production, and contributing to strong projections in the sector for 2015," added Hall. Exports from metal mining are forecast to grow 1 per cent this year, but then shoot up to 10 per cent in 2015.
Positive forecasts for the energy, aerospace, and transportation sectors are also contributing to Manitoba's strong export picture for 2014-2015.
EDC's semi-annual Global Export Forecast addresses the latest global export conditions including market- and sector-specific insights to help Canadian exporting companies grow their international sales. It also analyzes a range of risks for which exporters should be prepared. Read EDC's Global Export Forecast.
EDC is Canada's export credit agency, providing financing and insurance solutions locally and around the world to help Canadian companies of any size respond to international business opportunities. As a profitable Crown corporation that operates on commercial principles, EDC works together with private- and public-sector financial institutions to create greater capacity for Canadian companies to engage in trade and investment.
For more information about how EDC can help your company, visit www.edc.ca.
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