Resource exports down for Atlantic Canada: report

Ashley Fitzpatrick
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Atlantic Provinces Economic Council report card released

IOC port facility at Sept-iles, Que. - Photo by IOC

International exports from Newfoundland and Labrador continue to be slow to recover from the 2008-09 economic recession.

The Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC) has released a “report card” on regional export levels — having reviewed changes for the provinces from 2008 to present.

Even now, “the value of Atlantic Canada’s international merchandise exports in 2012 were 11 per cent (or $3.9 billion) lower than in 2008; nationally, exports were 6 per cent below 2008 levels,” the report states.

“In Newfoundland and Labrador, exports are down 25 per cent since 2008, dragged down by a 45 per cent drop in the value of crude oil exports,” it notes, adding less oil is coming from the older oil fields like Hibernia and last year’s production dropped off while production vessels for the White Rose and Terra Nova fields were offline for maintenance.

There was a jump in exports from Atlantic Canada to Asia, mainly with higher exports of Labrador iron ore to China.

“Iron ore and copper from Newfoundland and Labrador both show solid gains since 2008, primarily due to higher commodity prices, while newsprint exports have declined due to reductions in capacity,” the report states.

Recovery in Atlantic Canada is uneven, with exports of certain products — like New Brunswick “gaming machines” and Nova Scotia fish — seeing gains notable enough to make it into the think tank’s report card.

However, select highlights are outweighed by the overall story. Nova Scotia’s exports, for example, are 33 per cent lower than in 2008, mainly due to a drop in natural gas exports, both in quantity and value.

The report card states export levels have been impacted by a higher Canadian dollar versus the Euro and a more extended recession in Europe.

 

afitzpatrick@thetelegram.com

Organizations: APEC, Hibernia

Geographic location: Atlantic Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador, Atlantic Provinces Nova Scotia White Rose Terra Nova Asia China New Brunswick

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