The future of productivity


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Declining productivity is the most significant threat to Canada’s standard of living

Over the last decades, productivity in the Canadian economy has failed to grow at the same pace as the United States and other advanced economies.

- Productivity growth in Canadian manufacturing averaged 0.88% between 2000 and 2008, well below the 3.3% rate of growth for U.S. manufacturing

- As labour costs rose between 2000 and 2007, Canadian business’ per-worker investment in labour-saving machinery and processes was only 52% of the U.S. investment

- 43% of new jobs come from the fastest growing 5% of all firms

- Only 2.66% of Canadian services firms five years or older are able to maintain high-growth. In the U.S. that number is 4.5%. In Israel it's 5.43%

- An over-reliance on NAFTA means that Canada has 10 Free Trade Agreements compared to Chile’s 52 thereby limiting potential growth

Find out about the myths, the facts and what Canada has to do to restore its competitiveness. Download the full report:

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The future of productivity

  1. 1. The future of productivityFind out about the myths, the facts and what Canada has to do to restore its competitiveness.Download the full report at’s global trade-offWith an over-reliance on NAFTA, Canada has a limited amount of FTAs with the Free trade agreementsrest of the world (especially with developing nations) which limits the potential Canada 10of future productivity growth. Take a look at how we stack up against Chile, Chile 52and you get an interesting picture. 5.4%Canada’s high-growth firms…aren’t high-growth enough 4.5%Matched up against international competition (like theU.S. and Israel), high-growth Canadian firms do well inthe early years. But on average, productivity growthslows down rapidly as they mature past that point. IfCanada wants to stay competitive withhigh-performance OECD countries in the future, thissimply has to change.High-growth firms, percentage of total market 2.7% Under 5 years Over 5 years 0.54% 0.15% 0.54% Canada U.S. IsraelStacking up the numberson new jobs in CanadaIn Canada, a disproportionate 43% ofnew jobs come from the fastest growing 43% 57% of new jobs of new jobs 95% of all firms5% of all firms. 5% of all firms 20% More productiveAll Canadian companies arelosing steam to the U.S.When it comes to productivity, U.S. businesses are 14% More productiveoutperforming their Canadian counterparts - in everyfirm size. U.S. firms with more than 500 employeesare 20% more productive than their Canadiancounterparts and 14% more productive in businesseswith less than 500 employees. Canada U.S. Large business Small business