It’s been almost six months since the COVID-19 pandemic dramatically changed the way of life for all Manitobans.

Early days, the impact on the business community and the economy was a cause of major concern with polls indicating 30% of businesses wouldn’t survive. Since that time, as a result of a number of key government programs and the pivot that many businesses have made, the economic recovery has slowly become a little clearer and optimistic.

A new RBC Provincial Outlook, Provincial Economies: Diverse yet together in experiencing historic recession, highlights that Manitoba is expected to fare better than other provinces with a decrease in real GDP expected for 2020 of only -3.8 — much better than the Canadian average of -6.0. The outlook highlights several factors that have contributed to Manitoba’s “better than others” performance:

  1. Manitoba’s early success on keeping COVID cases low minimized the impact on the labour market
  2. Work on large capital projects such as the Roquette processing plant in Portage La Prairie continued with minimal disruption
  3. Consumers have shown greater resilience than other provinces; and
  4. Exporters experienced only a small decline in business overall

While by no means does this mean it is business as usual in Manitoba, these results provide a shred of hope and optimism that if we continue to be vigilant and disciplined in our approach to mitigating the spread of COVID-19, the Manitoba economy will recover.

To read the complete RBC Economics report, click here.