B.C. Business: Q&A - Ken Peacock and David Williams talk inflation, immigration, supply chains—and Canada's debt problem

November 1, 2021
Ken Peacock


Your recent B.C. economic review and outlook is called Stronger Today, Momentum for Tomorrow. Sounds fairly encouraging.

Ken Peacock: A high-level summary of what we see over the next couple of years: it is fairly encouraging. The global backdrop is strong, but the B.C. economy, in particular, is poised for very strong growth this year. And that’s going to continue into next year, although we have pencilled in some expectation of a moderation in the pace of expansion next year.

If someone told me I’d be writing up an economic forecast report that suggested that the B.C. economy would be firing in almost all cylinders by mid-2020, I would have said that’s unlikely. So it’s turned out to be much better than we would have expected a year ago.

The Bank of Canada forecasts that global GDP growth will be close to 7 percent this year, then fall to 4.4% in 2022 and to 3.2% in 2023. Where does Canada fit into the big picture?

David Williams: Canada’s doing pretty well, and a reason for that is the big ramp-up in vaccinations that took place in the second quarter of this year. Canada was a bit of a laggard in the first quarter, and so it looked like we were going to be late to the reopening party that we were seeing in the U.S. and in other countries.

But…we’re one of the world leaders now in vaccination, and that’s allowed a lot more activity to reopen and get back to normal. We still have some restrictions in place and some being reintroduced. But at the same time, businesses and customers have become more adept at operating in this environment. So that’s allowing us to get back to some semblance of normality.

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