Northern Development Initiative Trust has released its 2021 State of The North Economic Report.
This will highlight the economy in year two of the pandemic.
The report found that during the first half of 2021 employment declined significantly because of construction sites being shut down and industrial facilities being temporarily closed.
Meanwhile, in the second half of the year employment levels in construction, transportation and warehousing were on the decline.
According to this report, this was due to transportation issues from wildfires and supply chain shortages.
It added that by November, employment in transportation was showing signs of recovery while jobs in construction remained below pre-pandemic levels.
Employment levels are expected to increase as major projects proceed and mining activity increases.
The report also said as more restrictions are lifted there will be more tourism activity which will require additional labour in the sector.
Housing prices also continued to increase in the Northwest for the fourth straight year with prices in Smithers growing modestly in 2021 after experiencing record gains in 2020.
The Smithers area saw 6.3 % year over year change as in 2021 saw the average home price at $445,500 compared to 2020 where the average price was $419,000.
As for Houston it saw a 9.4% year over year change with housing prices in September 2020 at $284,450 compared to September 2019 where housing prices were at $260,000.
Meanwhile, in Burns Lake it had a 66.4% year over year change.
In September 2020, housing prices jumped to $389,450 compared to $234,000 in September 2019.
The report added for Houston and Burns Lake there were no quarterly reports.
It is expected that the LNG Canada Facility and Coastal GasLink project is expected to create demand for housing in the region.
The full report can be found on Northern Development Initiative Trust’s website.