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London to be among top performing economies of 2003

News Release via Canada Newswire

January 14, 2003

Southern Ontario Cities will perform well in 2003

OTTAWA, ON -- The southern Ontario cities of St. Catharines, Toronto, and London will be among Canada’s top-performing metropolitan economies this year, according to The Conference Board of Canada’s Metropolitan Outlook-Winter 2003.

The St. Catharines/Niagara region will post growth of 3.8 per cent in real gross domestic product in 2003, led by a recovery in the labour market late in 2002 and a sound outlook for the construction sector.
Toronto will achieve 3.7 per cent growth in 2003, fuelled by growing non-residential construction and broad-based growth in the service sector.

In London, a revival of labour market activity will lift growth to 3.6 per cent in 2003, a solid rebound from an average annual growth rate of 0.3 per cent over the previous three years.

“With both the manufacturing and tourism sectors posting better results and the construction of Casino Niagara accelerating, St. Catharines/Niagara can look forward to a strong 2003,” said Mario Lefebvre, Associate Director, Metropolitan Outlook.

“The Toronto economy, which benefited from a strong rebound in the automotive and housing sectors in 2002, will manage to do even better in 2003, thanks to strong growth in non-residential construction and broad-based gains in the services sector.”

“There is cause for optimism in London, with two high-profile grand openings in the downtown core last year and a recovery in employment since the second quarter of 2002.”

Calgary is forecast to lead all 18 cities covered by this edition of the Metropolitan Outlook, with economic growth of 4.9 per cent in 2003, and will also lead all cities with growth averaging 3.3 per cent per year from 2004 to 2007.

Saskatoon will post the second-fastest growth rate in the country in 2003, at four per cent. Edmonton will rank third with growth of 3.8 per cent in 2003, followed by St. Catharines, Toronto and London.

About the source: The Metropolitan Outlook, produced three times a year, provides economic insights into 25 census metropolitan areas, their related province and Canada.

News release via Canada NewsWire.

For more information: Brent Dowdall, Media Relations

Tel: (613) 526-3090 ext. 448


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