Province Has Added 113,700 Jobs Since This Time Last Year
Employment in Ontario increased by 15,700 jobs in February and the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.5 per cent.
According to the recently released 2017-18 Third Quarter Finances, the government is projecting to deliver on its commitment to balance the budget this year while making investments in the programs and services people and families rely on most.
Ontario’s economy has shown steady growth. In fact, since 2014 Ontario’s economy has grown more than Canada’s and all of the other G7 countries, but the government knows that more must be done to ensure that the benefits of a growing economy are shared fairly across the province.
Ontario is committed to modernizing employment standards and labour laws while helping businesses and the economy grow. This includes raising the minimum wage to $14 an hour on January 1, ensuring part-time workers are paid the same hourly wage as full-time workers, introducing paid sick days for every worker, and enabling at least three weeks’ vacation after five years with the same employer.
Ontario’s plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.
- Employment growth has occurred in many economic regions across the province, year-over-year increases include Stratford-Bruce Peninsula (4.3 per cent), Toronto (4.0 per cent) and Hamilton-Niagara Peninsula (3.0 per cent).
- The employment increase was led by monthly gains in the transportation and warehousing and educational services sectors.
- Private-sector forecasters, on average, have estimated that Ontario real GDP increased by 2.8 per cent in 2017.
- Ontario’s Business Growth Initiative is a five-year commitment of more than $650 million to grow the economy and create jobs by promoting an innovation-based economy, helping small companies scale-up and modernizing regulations for businesses.