fifth out of 16 top western nations
Canadian paper workers
Canada ranks 5th in overall economic performance among the top 16 countries around the world. Not bad at all.
The news comes to us from the Conference Board of Canada which has done a big international study on “How Canada Performs: the Economy” to find out which countries around the world are prosperous and which are not.
The bottom line, it turns out, is that natural resources are what really make the difference. The countries with oil and gas, and high education and low unemployment and lots of investment, either going out of the country or pouring in are the ones ahead of the pack.
So if we are fifth in line, who’s ahead of us? The report says Australia is the world leader; followed by Ireland (a surprise given how it lagged behind everybody for so long); then comes the United States; and then Norway. (Remember the oil in the North Sea).
Some countries are on a par with us: the United Kingdom; Sweden; Germany; and Austria. The “B” grade countries.
Nations identified by the Conference Board as struggling with a “C-" rating include Japan, Denmark and the Netherlands. (Too bad, they are such nice people.)
The real losers, however, are France, Finland and Belgium who got “D-" ratings. Who would have guessed?
No Africa in the top 16 countries. It takes more than just natural resources.
The Conference Board used eight indicators to assess quality of life for the 16 countries -- income per capita; GDP growth; employment growth; unemployment growth, inflation, labor productivity growth, outward foreign investment growth (domestic firms investing abroad); inward foreign investment growth (foreign money invested in the country).
Canada got “A” grades for its GDP growth and employment growth but “B” grades when it came to inflation and unemployment rates.
Where Canada really got pulled down was the “C” grade it got for labor productivity and a “D” grade for government measures that affect long-term prosperity.
Next week we’ll publish Conference Board’s ratings for the various Canadian provinces to see which provinces are really making it and which ones are pulling us down.