The sun is expected to continue to shine on the economy of Vancouver Island according to a report released today by the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance, but perhaps not as brightly as last year. John McKinley/VI Free Daily

Economic summit says Vancouver Island economy remains rosy

But there are warning signs, according to a report by the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance

The economic prospects of Vancouver Island are looking pretty good at the moment.

Just not quite as good as they looked in the fall of 2016.

That’s the verdict of the the third-annual State of the Island economic report unveiled this afternoon as the Vancouver Island Economic Summit wrapped up in Nanaimo.

RELATED: John Horgan addresses Vancouver Island Economic Summit

Susan Mowbray, an economist with MNP and the report’s author said many of the Island’s key economic indicators remain strong, however their rate of growth has slowed. And a few extenuating factors — locally and abroad — bear watching.

Foremost among the big picture items are the increases in Bank of Canada’s prime lending rate and the uncertainty surrounding the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Closer to home, while the demand for wood products remains strong, access to wood fibre means there has not been corresponding increases in wood production. Meanwhile, retail and service businesses are struggling to fill low-wage jobs in part because of a lack of affordable housing.

The growth in the number of international students and tourists coming here has slowed. The caveat of course it that those numbers are still very strong, unemployment is at some of the lowest levels in the province and the softwood situation has yet to put its feared dent in the forestry industry.

And the housing market is booming as our population growth continues in all sub-regions except the North Island.

“I don’t want anyone to think the Island economy won’t continue to go well; it will,” Mowbray said. “The outlook remains rosy. It’s just not quite as rosy as it was a year ago.”

Just Posted

Death-penalty decision delayed for alleged cold-case killer

William Talbott is charged here in the 1987 slaying of a young Victoria-area couple

Emergency crews responding to incident in Goldstream Provincial Park

Delays in both directions on the Trans-Canada Highway in Langford

Scam arrives on Saanich senior’s doorstep

Pair of fraudulent officers threaten to arrest 90-year-old woman

Pandora supervised consumption site has busy first month

Site whose aim is to save lives takes on a new client-driven name: The Harbour

Victoria’s plastic bag ban inspires local entrepreneur to give back

Karebags a local, collaborative alternative for reusable bags, donates profits to charity

Through your lens: Okanagan wildfires

Check out some of the captivating images and video from social media of the wildfires

BC Games: Opening Ceremony from Laketown Ranch

Hundreds of athletes and thousands of volunteers, coaches, parents and officials

World’s translators push back on forcing Trump interpreter to testify

Democrats had asked translator to testify about Trump’s lengthy conversation with Putin in Helsinki

No decision on B.C. school stabbing suspect’s mental fitness for trial

The BC Review Board could not determine whether Gabriel Klein, 21, is fit to stand trial

FRESH IDEA: Victoria tech firm beneficiary of streamlined government system

Software developer FreshWorks awarded $1.5-million contract using new bid program

Canadian government threatens to retaliate if Trump imposes auto tariffs

U.S president had suggested that auto imports pose a national security risk to the U.S.

Wildfire evacuation order forces bride to search for new wedding venue

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards is under an order due to the Mount Eneas wildfire south of Peachland

Recent online kitten abuse video raises serious social media questions

UBC and UFV profs weigh in on the subject of online sharing, shaming, and our digital landscape

UPDATED: ICBC fights back against claims that it’s ‘ripping off’ B.C. RV drivers

Canadian Taxpayers Federation is urging the provincial government to open up ICBC to competition

Most Read