Dec 03, 2012
By Jane Brown
Canada’s economic prosperity may be at risk due to a split in the labour market.
CIBC Deputy economist Benjamin Tal says that while employers in fields such as health care and natural resources are having a difficult time finding enough skilled staff, Canadians trained in occupations such as clerical work and manufacturing are going without employment for long periods.
He says nearly one in three businesses is facing a skilled labour shortage, while a flood of workers experienced in “traditional” occupations make up roughly 20 per cent of the unemployed.
Tal warns that the labour “mismatch” is hurting Canada`s standard of living and productivity, as the job gap acts as a drag on economic growth.
He says Ottawa has been too focused on bringing in foreign workers to fill job shortages, and needs to do a much better job of training jobless Canadians in new occupations.