Victoria The BC Construction Association (BCCA) released its latest construction sector statistics package today, which shows a booming construction sector ($115 billion in projects underway and another $206 billion in proposed projects on the horizon) meeting the challenges of continued growth with an increase in construction companies and rising average wages for a workforce that is 85 per cent non-union.

The BCCA’s Fall 2019 Stat Pack shows that overall, B.C.’s construction industry continues to be the No. 1 employer in B.C.’s goods sector, with more than 236,000 people relying directly on construction for a paycheque: that’s up 17% since 2014, and at 9.2% of the total B.C. workforce, is more than any other sector, including forestry, mining, agriculture, fishing, and manufacturing combined. Over the past 12 months, 1,389 new construction companies were established in B.C., bringing the total to 25,736, up 17% over the past 5 years. Meanwhile, the average yearly wages they pay employees has also risen, from $57,647 to $61,784 over the past year.

“These numbers clearly show the importance of the construction sector to the provincial economy,” said Chris Atchison, President, BCCA.

Additionally, the 10-year projection of B.C. construction jobs that will be unfilled in 2028 due to labour shortages stands at 7,900 (BuildForce Canada: January 2019). That’s a 32.5% reduction from the January 2018 projection of 11,700 construction jobs unfilled in 2027. While that reduction is due in part to the cancellation of certain proposed projects, progress on the labour shortage front is also being made through a number of construction sector initiatives aimed at attracting and retaining skilled labour, trades training (Trades Training Fund), improving worksite culture (Builders Code) and matching tradespeople to construction employment opportunities (STEP).

KEY B.C. CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY STATISTICS:

•         Construction is the No. 1 employer in B.C.’s goods sector.

•         Value of proposed construction projects in British Columbia: $206 billion

•         Value of current construction projects underway in B.C.: $115 billion

•         B.C.’s construction industry accounts for 8.6% of the province’s GDP.

•         More than 236,000 people rely directly on B.C.’s Construction industry for a paycheque. That’s 9.2% of the workforce. (More than any other sector, and more than forestry, mining, agriculture, fishing, and manufacturing combined) (5-year trend: Up 17%)

•         Number of construction trades workers in B.C.’s labour force: 180,300 (B.C. Stats: Spring 2019)

•         Number of construction companies in B.C.: 25,736 (Up from 24,347 in Fall 2018; 5-year trend: Up 17%)

•         The average yearly wage of B.C. construction employees: $61,784 (Up from 57,647 in Fall 2018; 5-year trend: Up 10%) (Cumulative yearly wage is $14.6B)

•         Number of construction jobs in B.C. that will be unfilled due to labour shortages by 2028: 7,900 (BuildForce Canada: January 2019) (10-year forecast down from 11,700 in January 2018)

•         Percentage of construction workforce that is unionized: 15%

•         Percentage of construction trades workforce in B.C. that is male: 95%

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