Major City Insights: Saskatoon—May 2022

The Conference Board of Canada, May 3, 2022
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Despite the rise in case counts from both the Omicron and BA.2 variants early in 2022, most Canadian cities have already seen restrictions loosened or dropped. We expect this to aid in the continued recovery of CMA economies across the country this year. It’s especially good news for the travel and tourism markets in each region, which so far have lagged most other industries in returning to their pre-pandemic levels. Still, higher prices and instability in other parts of the world serve as a downside risk to this year’s outlook.

This edition of our Major City Insights provides new forecasts for growth in 13 major cities across Canada as of March 23, 2022.

This forecast focuses on the Saskatoon metropolitan economy.

Document Highlights

  • Saskatoon’s economy had been stagnant since the commodity crash in 2014, and the impact of COVID-19 only made things worse. The city’s real GDP was 5.5 per cent lower in 2020 than it had been in 2014.
  • Real GDP grew by an estimated 4.4 per cent last year, about half of a percentage point under Canada’s overall 4.9 per cent gain, as drought in the province dragged down growth in the primary and utilities sector.
  • Looking forward, Saskatoon’s real GDP will outpace both provincial and national growth for the duration of our forecast period. We anticipate growth at an average annual rate of 3.1 per cent from 2022 to 2026.
  • The primary and utilities sector will be the largest contributor to GDP growth in 2022, as an agricultural recovery, a ramp-up of potash and uranium mining, and an increase in oil output are all in the cards.
  • Overall, the city’s real GDP will grow by 5.3 per cent in 2022 and a further 4.1 per cent in 2023.

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