The Economic Impact of Public Infrastructure in Ontario

The Conference Board of Canada, 39 pages, March 2010
Report by Pedro Antunes, Kip Beckman, Jacqueline Johnson
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Public infrastructure has helped boost Ontario’s economy over the past 30 years by increasing its productivity. This report estimates that each dollar of infrastructure spending through ReNew Ontario is adding $1.11 to the province’s real GDP.

Document Highlights

  • Public capital has long been a strong contributor to the performance of Ontario’s private sector—it accounted for 12 per cent of labour productivity gains in Ontario between 1980 and 2008.
  • Each dollar of real public infrastructure spending through ReNew Ontario is adding $1.11 to Ontario’s real gross domestic product, as well as helping to create jobs, boost personal incomes and corporate profits, and increase tax collections.
  • The recent extra boost to infrastructure spending from new initiatives to counter the recession helped lift real GDP growth by 0.9 percentage points in 2009 and is forecast to add a further 0.4 percentage points in 2010.
  • If not for the stimulative impact of this added boost to infrastructure spending, Ontario’s economy would have lost an additional 70,000 in 2009. In 2010, when infrastructure spending peaks, another 40,000 jobs will be added to the payrolls in the province.

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