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Labour shortage is now Canadaís top problem


May 6, 2008
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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Ottawa, Ont. – The countryís aging baby boomers and a predicted labour shortage mean our demand for skilled workers will soon outstrip our supply, according to Canadaís Human Resources Minister Monte Solberg.

In a speech at the Canadian Building and Construction Tradesí Legislative Conference, Solberg made it clear that the countryís aging population and low birth rates are now causing a problem with labour productivity.
“Our demographics are working against us,” Solberg told conference attendees. “Baby boomers are set to retire and our low birth rate means demand for workers will soon outstrip supply.”
More than 80 per cent of working-age Canadians are employed, an all-time high in the country. However, while a high employment rates seems good, the country could be heading for a problem. Government forecasters say that the workforce will only grow by 11 per cent in the next 50 years – and that figure includes the effects of current levels of immigration.
In his speech, Solberg estimated that:
* British Columbia will be short 350,000 workers over the next 12 years.
* Alberta will require 100,000 workers over the next 10 years.
* Ontario will need 560,000 more workers by 2030.
* Quebec will have 1.3 million job openings by 2016.
“We have a significant shortfall of workers in every region across Canada,” said Solberg. “Even in areas of high unemployment, we have too few skilled workers.”