Halifax, October 4, 2022 – As Manufacturing Month kicks off for October, CME Nova Scotia is laser-focused on amplifying the significant role manufacturers play in the province – particularly as a driver for rural economic development.
Manufacturing remains a formidable industry in Nova Scotia with over 1,700 organizations across the province employing over 31,000 Nova Scotians. However, the prosperity of the sector, and the economic benefits it brings, will be brought into question unless the labour shortage is addressed.
“What can most certainly be categorized as a challenge for manufacturing in Nova Scotia should also be seen as an untapped opportunity for the province,” says Michel Raymond, Vice President of CME’s Nova Scotia Division. “After all, we are home to some of Canada’s strongest post-secondary institutions leading the nation in R&D, innovation hubs, ocean tech and green technology solutions – among others. There is ample potential for graduates to transfer this knowledge, and these skill-sets, into careers in our sector.”
Starting this month, CME Nova Scotia will be hosting tours of some of their member organizations for students in order to showcase the vast and diverse range of professional opportunities available in the industry.
Raymond notes that recruitment is most important for rural communities in Nova Scotia, where manufacturers play an essential role in the economy, and are frequently the largest employers in the area.
“Manufacturing in Nova Scotia is unique as the sector has been well-established over the centuries, and in many cases see multi-generations of employees from the same family,” said Raymond. “This is a huge asset to our organizations, as skills and passion is passed on through generations, and the consistency of excellence in standards is a large part of why our products are known around the world.”
After labour shortages, Raymond identifies energy costs and stability as the next most pressing issue for the industry – with concerns around the impending federal carbon tax.
“We see our opportunities as far outweighing any challenges ahead of us,” says Raymond, noting that the sector is responsible for $4.5 billion in exported manufactured goods each year. “Our commitment for this month, and beyond, is to continue building strong partnerships with our partners and government. Working together, we can capitalize on Nova Scotia’s geographical advantage, which makes it much easier for our region to export to US and European markets using our deep ocean ports, rail access, trucking and freight services.”
- The manufacturing sector accounts for nearly 10% of Canada’s real gross domestic product.
- Manufacturers employ 1.7 million people in Canada.
- Total manufacturing sales hit a record high of $718.4 billion in 2021.