Calgary Stampede 2022 is officially in the books and being hailed a success for the city.
It’s also being seen as the latest sign that Alberta’s economy is back on track, in both activity and jobs, and is expected to reach pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year.
“Alberta has finally caught up with the other provinces in recovery,” said Alicia Planincic with the Business Council of Alberta. “I think there are even signs that not only have we caught up with other provinces, but there are actually other good signs that Alberta may be faring better than other provinces.”
In a report released Monday morning, the Business Council of Alberta showed that banks are forecasting GDP per capita to bounce back to 2019 levels in the next five months.
While many industries are seeing growth, the report points out that start-up activity remains low and that there are 1,400 fewer businesses operating in Alberta than pre-COVID.
Not all cities are seeing even growth, with Edmonton and Red Deer lagging behind Calgary and Lethbridge.
The council points out that despite these lower rates, 17 of the province’s 20 industries have seen job vacancies double since 2019, due in part to an aging workforce.
“It’s a bit harder, too, I think for energy industries to think longer term just in the midst of this low carbon energy transition and policy changes and all the uncertainty” said Planincic.
As for the job market, the council points to the province’s 4.9 per cent unemployment rate — the lowest in five years.
The Stampede contributed roughly 3,000 jobs to the provincial economy, but it doesn’t end there.
North American Midway put out a call for temporary workers to help tear down at the end of the show, and said it’s still looking to hire up to 75 workers as the show heads north to Edmonton’s K-Days.