Reshaping Atlantic Canada’s Economy
Natural Resources Atlantic Canada has a long history of harvesting, transforming and selling natural resources — which allowed this region to build strong trade ties around the world.
Today, Atlantic Canada is also a leader in other cutting edge sectors such as ocean technology, aerospace and defence, biotechnology and clean and renewable energy.
An education for booming indutries
These modern sectors are buoying the region’s world-class R&D capabilities and renowned learning institutions made up of 17 universities and four community colleges.
These schools offer numerous programs, including a full range of curriculums in sciences, engineering, business, agricultural and veterinary sciences and ocean technologies. World-class academic programs, small class sizes, highly qualified faculty and affordable tuition rates make Atlantic Canadian universities a great choice for any student.
Thriving industry sectors
Atlantic Canada is home to more than 200 aerospace and defence firms, including branches of multinationals like Lockheed Martin, Boeing and EADS, that employ more than 10,000 skilled workers across the region. The industry generates over $1 billion in annual revenues and exports to 180 countries around the world.
With the renewal of Canada’s naval and coast guard fleets ramping up, the aerospace and defence sector will continue to grow in Atlantic Canada. Indeed, Canada’s $38.6 billion National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy selected Irving Shipbuilding of Halifax, Nova Scotia, to build the next generation of Canada’s combat vessels. This contract represents the largest component of the Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Coast Guard fleet renewal project and will provide opportunities for Atlantic Canada’s aerospace and defence firms, their business partners and supply chain companies for many years to come.
"These competitive advantages, along with the excellent quality of life in the region, are what set Atlantic Canada apart as a great place to live, work, invest and play."
Atlantic Canada’s vibrant ocean technology industry is made up of 140 companies in the region, generating over $1 billion in sales annually. These companies are involved in a wide range of scientific and engineering work, including ocean observation, ocean mapping, charting and geophysical surveying.
Atlantic Canada is also blessed with a wealth of natural resources, including vast energy resources. Our region has one of the fastest-growing and most innovative energy sectors in North America, with major new projects in offshore oil and gas and hydroelectricity. The clean and renewable sectors such as wind and tidal energy are also growing. Regionally, the energy sector is responsible for over 18,700 jobs, and energy products represent almost 60 percent of the region’s merchandise exports. In 2013, energy products produced in Atlantic Canada for export were worth $18.1 billion.
Bioscience is a world-leading sector in Atlantic Canada. More than 100 bioscience companies and 25 research organizations are located in the region and are generating more than $300 million in annual private sector revenues.
These organizations are at the forefront of global research in human health, medical technologies and diagnostics, marine biology, vaccine diagnostics, pharmaceutical and therapeutics, animal and fish health products, and agricultural technology.
Atlantic Canada’s competitive advantage
These are just some examples of industry sectors that are thriving in Atlantic Canada, generating new wealth, boosting employment and better paying jobs, and with good reason. Atlantic Canada offers these industries numerous competitive advantages, including significantly lower operating costs for businesses than in other jurisdictions, a highly-skilled and dedicated workforce, advanced and reliable telecommunications and transportation networks, as well as close proximity to North American and international markets.
These competitive advantages, along with the excellent quality of life in the region, are what set Atlantic Canada apart as a great place to live, work, invest and play.