Central Okanagan economic engine continues power growth

Construction workers in Kelowna.

The latest data indicators from the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission show the region’s economy is ticking along nicely.

For the first nine months of 2017, the 2,912 housing starts are up 90 per cent from the same period last year. Most of the increase is due to  rental apartment projects.

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That’s expected to reduce the central Okanagan’s vacancy rate from .6 per cent to 2.1 per cent in 2018.

It’s estimated 99,103 people are employed, an increase from the 89,888 in the corresponding period last year.

Total job postings of 4,109 are up 22 per cent compared to 2016. The bulk of the increase is in sales and service occupations.

The unemployment rate is pegged at 5.2 per cent, down from 7.9 per cent.

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Passenger counts from January to September at the Kelowna airport are up 11 per cent from 2016 to 1,422,042.

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