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Manitoba likely to lead in capital spending increases this year: survey

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Manitoba is expected to be one of the country’s leaders in capital spending increases this year, according to the results of a new Statistics Canada survey.

The agency said today that private and public sector spending on construction projects and machinery and equipment is expected to climb by 8.5 per cent to a projected $13.4 billion from a preliminary total of $12.2 billion in 2012.

That’s more than four times the projected national average increase of 1.7 per cent, and second only to Newfoundland and Labrador’s projected 9.7 per cent gain.

However, it would be down slightly from 2012’s preliminary increase of 9.7 per cent.

The bulk of this year’s increase will be on the construction side, where spending is expected to jump by 10 per cent to $9.8 billion from $8.9 billion in 2012. Expenditures on machinery and equipment is expected to grow by a more modest 4.3 per cent to $3.6 billion from $3.4 billion.

Statistics Canada said Canada’s projected 1.7 per cent increase, which is based on forecasts of public and private organizations, including the housing sector, would be the smallest since the economic downturn in 2009.

It says the main contributor to the slowdown is an anticipated decline in investment reported by the mining and oil and gas extraction sector, although strong increases are expected in the utilities sector and in transportation and warehousing.

Of total investment, capital spending by the public sector is anticipated to rise five per cent to $88 billion, while private sector investment is expected to edge up 0.8 per cent to $310.2 billion.

— with files by Canadian Press

murray.mcneill@freepress.mb.ca

 

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