Nfld. & Labrador

'Mild recession' for N.L. next year, Conference Board of Canada says

The Conference Board of Canada is predicting a "subdued" economic outlook for Newfoundland and Labrador, because of plunging oil and metal prices and the completion of big construction projects.

2-year economic outlook 'subdued' due to plunging oil and metal prices

Falling oil and metal prices mean the provincial economy will flatline, according to the Conference Board of Canada. (CBC)

The Conference Board of Canada is predicting a "subdued" economic outlook for the next two years in Newfoundland and Labrador, because of plunging oil and metal prices and the completion of big construction projects.

The Board said in a release Monday that the province will see a "mild recession" in 2016, with the economy shrinking by 0.8 per cent.

A small rebound of 0.2 per cent is predicted for 2017.

The Conference Board said "major projects have passed their peak investment levels and the matured offshore oil fields continue to produce less oil."

In addition, "the province is facing the challenge of low prices for both oil and metals, which will have a negative impact on near-term investment and production decisions."

Other Atlantic Canada provinces fared better.

The Conference Board predicts "healthy gains" in Nova Scotia, mainly because of a big shipbuilding contract with Irving.

"Modest growth" is predicted for New Brunswick in the mining industry and home construction, with some idle wood mills expected to reopen.

Prince Edward Island's economy will slow next year because of cuts in government spending, but pick up in 2017, said the board.

The Conference Board of Canada is a not-for-profit think-tank dedicated to researching and analyzing economic trends and public policy issues.

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