OECD Economic Surveys: Canada

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OECD’s periodic surveys of the Canadian economy. Each edition surveys the major challenges faced by the country, evaluates the short-term outlook, and makes specific policy recommendations. Special chapters take a more detailed look at specific challenges. Extensive statistical information is included in charts and graphs.

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OECD Economic Surveys: Canada 2016

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13 juin 2016
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9789264257795 (PDF) ; 9789264257801 (EPUB) ;9789264257788(imprimé)

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This 2016 OECD Economic Survey of the Canada examines recent economic developments, policies and prospects. The special chapters cover: Network sector competition; Small business dynamism.

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  • Basic statistics of Canada, 2015

    This Survey is published on the responsibility of the Economic and Development Review Committee (EDRC) of the OECD, which is charged with the examination of the economic situation of member countries.The economic situation and policies of Canada were reviewed by the Committee on 9 May 2016. The draft report was then revised in the light of the discussions and given final approval as the agreed report of the whole Committee on 27 May 2016.The Secretariat’s draft report was prepared for the Committee by David Carey and Corinne Luu, who benefitted from technical background papers prepared by John Lester and Mark Ronayne, under the supervision of Peter Jarrett. Research assistance was provided by Isabelle Luong and secretarial assistance by Dacil Kurzweg.The previous Survey of Canada was issued in June 2014.

  • Glossary
  • Executive summary

    Bank of Canada (2016), Monetary Policy Report, April; Statistics Canada, Table 379-0031.

  • Assessment and recommendations

    The Canadian economy has grown solidly since the turn of the century. The level and increases in GDP per capita have been similar to rates for the median of the most affluent OECD countries; labour productivity, however, remains lower in Canada (, Panels A and B). Canada also recovered more strongly from the global financial crisis than most other OECD countries, helped by the impressive rise in commodity prices that was sustained until mid-2014, a comparatively strong recovery in the United States, Canada’s main trading partner, a prudent banking system and supportive fiscal and monetary policies.

  • Progress in structural reform

    This Annex reviews the measures taken in response to the recommendations from previous Economic Surveys. The recommendations that are new to the present Economic Survey are contained in the corresponding chapters.

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  • Ouvrir / Fermer Cacher / Voir les résumés Thematic chapters

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    • Strengthening competition in network sectors and the internal market

      Canada’s productivity performance has lagged that of many other OECD countries, despite some improvement in recent years. One measure to enhance overall efficiency would be to strengthen competition on the domestic market to drive future multi-factor productivity improvements. The potential gains are large: about a half a percent per year over a fairly long horizon. This chapter focuses on increasing competition in network sectors, including energy, telecommunication services and broadcasting, and transportation, which are key inputs to production in the broader economy. Improving regulatory conditions, efficiency and/or cost competitiveness could yield more productive outcomes in these sectors, as well as in downstream industries. Competition could also be increased by lowering barriers to interprovincial trade and the movement of labour, which act to fragment Canada’s already small domestic market. To this end, reforms of the Agreement on Internal Trade and measures to reduce sectoral barriers to trade are also discussed.

    • Boosting productivity through greater Small Business Dynamism

      Small business dynamism is a feature of an SME sector that contributes to overall productivity growth, not an end in itself. Such dynamism increases productivity growth by reallocating resources towards more productive firms and strengthening the diffusion of new technologies. Small business dynamism in Canada has declined in recent decades, as in other OECD countries, but overall it remains in the middle of the range, with some indicators above average and others below. Framework economic policies are generally supportive of small business dynamism, especially labour regulation, but there is scope to reduce regulatory barriers to product market competition. Canada has many programmes to support small businesses. Some of the largest programmes are not well focused on reducing market failures. Focusing support more on reducing clear market failures would increase the contribution of these programmes to productivity growth and living standards. This would likely entail redirecting support from small businesses in general to start-ups and young firms with innovative projects, which would boost small business dynamism.

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