Steven Del Duca Minister of Economic Development and Growth has said that “Ontario has all the elements necessary to thrive in today’s economy — a responsible budget, a highly skilled workforce, a vibrant innovation ecosystem and a streamlined business climate. Our economy continues to perform extremely well — but there is always more work to do. We will continue our efforts to make Ontario’s economy more globally competitive and create good jobs.”
Employment in Ontario increased by 10,600 jobs in March and the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.5 per cent, the lowest it has been since July 2000.
Over the past three years, Ontario’s economy has outperformed all G7 countries in terms of real GDP growth. Exports and business investments have increased, and Ontario’s unemployment rate has been below the national average each month for almost three years. However the numbers do not tell the whole story. Many people are facing uncertainty and challenges. The government knows that more must be done to ensure that the benefits of a growing economy are shared fairly across the province.
This includes raising the minimum wage to $14 an hour on January 1, ensuring part-time workers are paid the same hourly wage as full-time workers, introducing paid sick days for every worker, and enabling at least three weeks’ vacation after five years with the same employer.
Ontario’s plan to support care, create opportunity and make life more affordable during this period of rapid economic change includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25, and 65 or over, through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.