A thriving local economy and strong employment numbers keep Halton a great place to live

The numbers are in and Halton continues to be a highly attractive place to live, work and invest.

The 2017 Economic Review has revealed strong economic growth and shows that businesses continue to see Halton as a premier place to invest. The annual Economic Review analyzes key indicators that point to the overall strength of the local economy and helps to guide future planning decisions. Here are some of the highlights from this year’s Review:

Commercial & industrial space is in demand

  • Local businesses are expanding and new businesses are investing in Halton. Overall building construction and permit value – including commercial, industrial and residential – has set records and reached $3.1 billion in 2017. This tops last year’s record high of $2.1 billion in total permit value.

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Residents are highly educated and in demand

  • UnemploymentRateHalton residents are among the most educated in Canada with 75 per cent having attained post-secondary education.
  • Businesses are tapping into our highly trained workforce. Halton reached full employment with a 4 per cent unemployment rate, which is well below the provincial and national averages of 6 per cent and 6.4 per cent respectively.

National and international businesses are taking notice

In 2017 Halton collaborated with Toronto Global to submit a bid for Amazon’s second headquarters (HQ2). In January this year, we learned that the Toronto Region bid which includes three Halton sites (Milton, Oakville, and Burlington) had been shortlisted by Amazon.

Other national and international businesses have taken notice and have invested or expanded in Halton:

  • Bradford-White Canada opened its 75,000 sq. ft. distribution and training centre last year.
  • Kraft Heinz Company announced a new distribution centre in Halton Hills, bringing more than 150 jobs to the region.
  • Magna’s two automotive parts plants in Milton underwent expansions in 2017.
  • Oakville’s Geotab was named one of the fastest growing telematics technology companies in North America.
  • Finland-based robotics company, Orfer, chose Burlington’s TechPlace as its North American location.

Businesses are confident in Halton as a place to live and work

The annual Business Conditions Survey provides a good perspective on how businesses are doing, their future plans and overall outlook. Results from the 2017 Survey align with the statistics coming out of the 2017 Review – people are investing, living and thriving in Halton:

  • four out of five businesses are optimistic about the future and expect economic conditions to remain stable or improve,
  • 65% of respondents rank Halton’s quality of life and safety as a locational advantage compared to the rest of the GTA,
  • more than half of businesses anticipate increased profits over the next 12 months,
  • one third of businesses planning to expand and hire additional staff in the next 12 months.

To learn more about investment opportunities in Halton, please visit halton.ca/invest. There, you will find the full 2017 Economic Review and Business Conditions Report, receive information on how to connect with one of our business consultants or learn about why Halton is a great place to live, work and invest.

As always, if you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton, LinkedIn or Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report”.