January 2019
Economic Development eNewsletter
As was the case in 2016 and 2017, Prince George experienced strong economic growth in 2018. Economic indicators tracked by the Economic Development Division demonstrate growth in several areas, including the number of people employed, the value of houses, construction, building permit values, business license applications, and passengers through the Prince George Airport.

2018 highlights:
  • A new record for the total value of building permits at $186.36 million, surpassing the previous high mark of $147.88 million set in 2007 by nearly $40 million or 26%.
  • New business license applications surpassed 400 in 2018, marking a 36.7% increase in new applications over the 294 recorded in 2017.
  • The Prince George Airport set a new passenger record with over 506,000 people passing through the airport during 2018.
Looking forward to 2019, Prince George's strategic position in the region, strong business community and future investments will continue to drive steady growth. The Economic Development Division plans to put a strong emphasis on supporting local workforce needs to ensure businesses and the economy continue to grow.

For an in-depth look at the current state of the Prince George economy, read this message from Mayor Lyn Hall.
2018 year-in-review: Investment inquires
The Economic Development Division tracks the number of investors who contact City Hall for information about locating or expanding a business in Prince George. During 2018, 42 Prospect and 6 General inquiries were received. Take a look at the following charts to get a sense of where the interest is coming from.
 
Note: A Prospect inquiry is considered to be a serious investor, while a General inquiry is often only looking for economic information.
Building permit values hit record high in 2018
The total value of building permits issued in Prince George in 2018 reached an all-time high of $186.38 million, surpassing the previous high mark of $147.88 million set in 2007 by nearly $40 million - a 26% increase.
 
To read more about this record year, visit the City of Prince George website .
2018 business license review
In 2018, there were 402 new business license applications. The majority came from people living in Prince George (80%). 37%, or 148 businesses, are considered home-based businesses.
 
If you're a new business or have an existing business and have a Prince George business license, you can sign up to be included in the City's online Business Directory
Video: 2018 Year-in-Review

2018 Year-in-Review, Prince George, BC
2018 Year-in-Review
2018 was a year of records for Prince George, including all-time high building permit values and the number of passengers through the Prince George Airport surpassing 500,00 for the first time. Watch this video to learn more about why 2018 was a banner year for economic growth. 

For additional information about the Prince George economy and investment opportunities, contact the Economic Development Division at 250-561-7633 or  ecdev@princegeorge.ca or visit our website
Clean tech roundtable: Finding workforce solutions for business
On November 29, 2018, the City of Prince George hosted a Clean Tech Roundtable that was attended by 25 businesses, Clean Tech project partner Community Futures-Fraser Fort George, the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC), the College of New Caledonia (CNC), and the City of Prince George. The purpose of the roundtable was to clarify the challenges around the attraction and retention of skilled professionals and workers to Prince George, to support businesses and post-secondary institutions in coming up with solutions to their workforce challenges, and to help the City to better understand how to assist local employers in attracting the skilled talent they need to Prince George.

Key take-aways from this initial meeting include:
  • The tight job market for professionals and skilled workers across Canada means that traditional recruitment efforts are not working as effectively as they used to.
  • Rather than searching for unemployed workers to fill vacant positions, successful recruitment increasingly needs to involve targeting people who are currently employed but are looking to make a change for lifestyle or work environment.
  • Recruitment efforts should shift toward promoting opportunities in Prince George to communities that have a strong base of the desired skills and include more emphasis on why Prince George is a good place to live, such as the sense of community, lifestyle, and cultural factors.
If you're interested in viewing the full report of findings from the Clean Tech Roundtable, contact Sandro Bravo, Project Coordinator at 250-561-7633 or Sandro.Bravo@princegeorge.ca
Workforce attraction and retention tools for business
If you're an employer who needs to recruit people from outside of Prince George for hard-to-fill positions, we can assist you in achieving your attraction and retention goals. We offer a number of attraction tools through the  Move Up Prince George website and also offer retention services.

Employee attraction:
  • Register for an employer account on Move Up Prince George and post a job for free to the website's Career Search page to reach potential candidates across Canada.
  • Download a digital web button and add it to your online career search page. Link this button back to the Move Up Prince George website so people interested in working for you can learn about life in Prince George.
  • Ask us about the promotional items we provide for recruitment packages and new employees that showcase the lifestyle in Prince George.
Employee retention:
  • We're available to answer potential candidate's questions about living in Prince George and to provide personalized tours for potential and new employees.
For more information about these tools and other attraction and retention services offered by the Economic Development Division, contact Christina Doll, Workforce Development Officer at  christina.doll@princegeorge.ca or 250-561-7633.

Contractor and employment opportunities: Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project
The LNG opportunity in Northern British Columbia represents a transformational opportunity for the province. As part of this opportunity, Coastal GasLink Pipeline Limited is building an approximately 670-kilometre pipeline from the Dawson Creek area to the West Coast of BC. The pipeline will transport natural gas to the proposed LNG Canada facility near Kitimat. The Coastal GasLink Pipeline project will provide 2,000-2,500 jobs during construction and is expected to create an additional $400 million in subcontracting opportunities to local and Indigenous businesses in Northern BC.

Coastal GasLink Pipeline is pleased to announce its Prince George Regional Economic Summit intended to connect local businesses and job seekers to opportunities with Coastal GasLink Prime Contractors and their subcontractors. The event will take place February 15th, 2019 and further details will be advertised in coming weeks.

For more information, as it comes available, on how to pre-register for this event please go to www.coastalgaslink.com.
City of Prince George named Open for Business Award finalist
For the second year in a row, the City of Prince George has been named an Open for Business Award finalist in the Large Community Category.

The BC Small Business Roundtable selected the City as an award finalist for its commitment to fostering small business success through the Move Up Prince George initiative.

The winners in each category will be announced at the Small Business BC Awards Gala on February 21, 2019.

Prince George featured as forest community in trucking magazine
Prince George's proud history of having forestry as one of its main economic drivers recently earned it a feature in the Truck Logger's Association  Truck LoggerBC magazine. 

The two-page article featuring Prince George highlights the city's ability to diversify its economy over the decades while continuing to embrace its roots in forestry. 

Want to learn more about the past and present state of the forestry industry in Prince George?  Read the full article here .
Clean BC report highlights
Almost all of the electricity we produce in British Columbia comes from clean and renewable resources. The CleanBC strategy is designed to aid in the way we consume energy in our buildings, cars, and industrial operations with most of the energy used still coming from fossil fuels.

Some highlights include:
  • Buildings: Making every building more efficient by improving the BC Building Code and increasing efficiency standards - until every new building is "net-zero energy ready" by the year 2032.
  • Cars: Just over 20 years from now, every new car will be a zero-emission vehicle (ZEV), with phased-in increases to the ZEV standard. Helping people afford cleaner cars and save money on gasoline bills with ZEV incentives and Make it easier to charge or fuel a ZEV or hydrogen car.
  • Industrial Operations: Directing a portion of B.C.'s carbon tax paid by industry into incentives for cleaner operations.
How to reach us
We're available to answer all of your investment related questions, to assist you with acting on business growth opportunities and overcoming challenges, and to provide workforce attraction and retention tools and services. If you have any questions related to these areas, please email us at ecdev@princegeorge.ca or call 250-561-7633.
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