What you won’t read in the Times & Transcript is anything remotely related to bad news on the economy. So, you will have to read it here. There is a disturbing trend emerging from New Brunswick’s exports. New Brunswick is an export-intensive province (one of the most dependent in Canada on exports) and since 2000, I have been tracking a downward decline in the export of many of our key sectors. Excluding exports from petroleum refineries, the total industry exports from New Brunswick are down by $624 million (2000 to 2003). Six of our top ten exported products have declined by a total value of $780 million.
% Decline in Value of Exports from NB (2000-2003)
Paper Mills (-25%)
Seafood Product Preparation and Packaging (-3%)
Pulp Mills (-22%)
Sawmills and Wood Preservation (-35%)
Veneer, Plywood and Engineered Wood Products (-36%)
Electric Power Generation (-34%)
Other Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying (-19%)
Animal Aquaculture (-33%)
Paperboard Mills (-38%)
*Source: Statistics Canada.
In addition, look closely at these industries. They are almost all based in New Brunswick’s rural communities.
Somebody needs to take a long hard look at the economic development policies of the Province of New Brunswick. Or maybe we should wait until these exports drop to zero before acting.