COEDC quarterly report shows skyrocketing building permit values

Economic indicators positive

Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission believes there are signs of economic recovery in its quarterly indicators report.

The commission points to a 251% increase in building permits values and a 5.75% jump in housing starts in the first quarter of 2021 as positive signs. The first quarter unemployment mark this year was 5.73%, which is better than the first quarter mark of 5.77% last year, just as the COVID-19 pandemic was beginning.

Building permit values totalled more than $629 million in the first quarter, which was up 170% compared to the first quarter of 2019, when more than $232 million in permits were issued.

“The Q1 2021 economic indicators show signs of economic recovery and rising business confidence in many sectors,” COEDC manager Krista Mallory said in a press release. “The number of business licences issued in the region increased 4.7 per cent over the past year, and many businesses have shown strong hiring growth, with an increase of 14.5 per cent in job postings compared to pre-pandemic levels in Q1 2020.”

The numbers still wallowing in the depths of despair are airport passenger traffic, which is down 80.4%, and job posting in arts, entertainment and recreation, which have plummeted 91% compared to this time last year.

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