The Saskatchewan construction industry continues to show great promise. That’s according to figures released by Statistics Canada in January 2012. The report said Saskatchewan is leading the country in non-residential building permits, and industry experts are saying these numbers are evidence of the incredible expansion year-over-year in Saskatchewan’s construction industry.
“Our growth has been incredible since 2006 and 2007, since the boom. And this has now become our regular growth,” said Michael Fougere, President of the Saskatchewan Construction Association (SCA), the body that represents the industrial, commercial, institutional and heavy construction industries across the province.
“We are leading the nation every year,” he said.
Non-residential construction in Saskatchewan was up 118.0 per cent in November 2011 over November 2010, the largest increase among the provinces, and according to Fougere, this is only the beginning.
“I don’t seethis growth slowing down or stopping. We’re seeing billions of dollars of investment in potash and oil and gas. I just don’t see it stopping,” he said.
There has been a steady growth in building permits for several months, creating construction jobs and opportunities for business in Saskatchewan. Something Fougere said is great, though with a slight complication.
“We don’t have enough skilled labour here. We are still meeting the needs of this increased demand, but the opportunities for work here are endless,” he said.
In the next five to six years, Fougere estimates the province will need an extra six to seven thousand employees to fill new jobs created in the construction industry alone.
With the help of the government, Fougere and the SCA are working to address the shortage and attract employees. The government is investing in workers looking for technical training at SIAST, Saskatchewan’s post-secondary technical institution with regional college campuses in cities across the province.
“The government is ensuring funding is available, and we are all working to ensure that there are seats for students at the SIAST regional colleges,” Fougere said.
Saskatchewan, according to Fougere, is a destination people should really consider. He notes that there are great careers here, complete with the support employees need to be successful and the opportunity to be a part of a thriving economy that shows no signs of slowing down.
“The world needs what Saskatchewan has, and they’re coming here to get it. This is Saskatchewan’s time, and I’m just ecstatic about the future,” Fougere said.
For more information on construction in Saskatchewan, please contact:
President, Saskatchewan Construction Association
Telephone: (306) 525-0171