May 6, 2004

Employment growth in York Region continues to exceed provincial and national average

NEWMARKET – Employment growth in York Region continues to exceed both provincial and national averages, notes the Employment and Industry 2003 survey that was recently released in a Planning and Economic Development Committee report.  Additionally, York Region’s business expansion across a variety of industry sectors continues to insulate the Region from sudden shifts in the business cycle.


Produced annually, the Employment and Industry report provides insight into emerging patterns of employment growth and economic development within York Region.  It is also intended to evaluate York Region’s employment and economic performance within a national and provincial perspective.


“Close monitoring of employment trends and business movement is an integral element of York Region’s Growth Management Strategy,” said Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch.  “Employment survey data contributes to land budget analysis, employment forecasts, density analysis and growth analysis in the Regional Centres and Corridors.”


The report is based on information collected from a door-to-door survey conducted with businesses located in selected employment areas and rural community centres in York Region between May and August of 2003.  With assistance from area municipalities, over 19,110 companies were contacted in 2003, with a 69.8% response rate.  These 13,340 firms accounted for an estimated 53.1% of total Regional businesses in 2003.


“The economic indicators presented in this report will allow Regional staff and Council to evaluate and respond to changes in the Region’s economy in a timely matter,” said Markham Regional Councillor Frank Scarpitti, Chair of the Region’s Planning and Economic Development Committee.  “The collection of employment and business data play a vital role in monitoring changes in the Region’s economy, in estimating Regional assessment base and in the forecasting and service requirements.”


Highlights of the Employment and Industry 2003 report include:


·         Between 1998 and 2003, employment in York Region has grown at an annual average rate of 7.1%.  Comparatively, national and provincial employment grew at annual average rates of 2.3% and 2.7% respectively.


·         As of year-end 2003, there were approximately 415,000 jobs in York Region, excluding home and farm-based employment.  All nine area municipalities in York Region recorded positive employment growth rates between 1998 and 2003.


·         Full-time jobs accounted for 79.1% of jobs in York Region in 2003, compared with 79.5% in 1998.  The number of part-time jobs increased slightly as a proportion of overall employment during this period, rising from 14.5% to 16.5%.   Seasonal employment accounted for the remaining 4.4% in 2003.


·         In 2003, 83.4% of York Region’s 26,000 firms employed less than 20 people.  This large number of small firms is indicative of a strong entrepreneurial spirit in the Region.


·         On an average annual basis, the fastest growing employment sectors in York Region between 1998 and 2003 were business services (9.6%), retail trade (7.7%), education (7.5%) and the finance, insurance and real estate (FIRE) sector (6.7%).


York Region’s Employment and Industry 2003 will be available from the York Region Web site in June at   Printed copies will also be available upon request from the Region’s Planning and Development Services Department by calling 1-877-464-9675, Ext. 1550.


The Employment and Industry report is one of a family of documents that profiles the Region’s economy and residents.  Other publications in the series include the Economic and Development Review; Opportunities for Investment; Vacant Employment Land Inventory; and the York Region Business Directory. 




Contact:            Wendy Lewis, Corporate Communications Services, York Region

- (905) 830-4444 or (416) 297-9696, ext. 1238

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The Regional Municipality of York is committed to providing cost-effective, quality services that respond to the needs of our rapidly growing communities.  York Region is comprised of the following nine area municipalities:  Aurora, East Gwillimbury, Georgina, King, Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, Vaughan and Whitchurch-Stouffville.  For more information, visit our Web site at:

Contact: Patrick Casey, Senior Media Relations Specialist, York Region

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