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Canada in Numbers
- Nicholas Hatley
Our northern neighbor of Canada provides for us as we provide for them. In terms of trade, we are their biggest partners and both together or individually, reign supreme as dominant forces in the world’s economy. In terms of employment and jobs, Canada is mainly composed of service industries. Nearly three quarters of the population are enrolled in these specific industries. However, even though service industries are currently dominating Canada’s economy, there is an ever-increasing technological landscape being produced; thus, promoting jobs and establishing new careers. However, the economy of Canada has not been up to par for several years. In 2006, Canada reached a depressing thirty year low of unemployment levels, much like their American counterparts, who has been suffering the same levels for many years. However, even with unemployment levels being quite low, Canada remains one of the top countries economically.
Even though Canada has high unemployment levels, it is better than what is was in years past. In 2012, the percentage of adult Canadians with jobs was nearly sixty-two percent. In retrospect, this would mean that forty-eight percent of the entire adult population was currently jobless at the time this data was collected by Canada’s Employment and Social Development. To some, this number is fairly lackluster; however, twenty-six years before in the year 1976, only about fifty-seven percent of the population possessed a job. Even through three economic recessions between 1976 and 2012, Canada still managed to increase their job growth to just over five percent. Internationally, amongst G7 countries, the employment rate of Canada was the second highest. G7 countries include the following: the United States, Canada, France, the United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, and Italy. The seven countries are the richest nations on the planet. In terms of national wealth, Canada ranks six of seven amongst the countries within the G7.
The education in Canada has several similarities with that of America. For example, education is separated into three separate portions: primary, secondary, and post-secondary. In addition to the layout similarity, education is mandatory up until the age of sixteen. However, in a few areas across Canada, education is mandatory up until the age of eighteen. In some areas, exceptions can be made to end the mandatory education law at the age of fourteen. Normally, Canada has one-hundred and ninety school days per year. This differs from the United States, which has one-hundred and eighty school days per year. In Quebec, there are one-hundred and eighty school days per year; thus, correlating with the United States in that retrospect.
One in ten Canadians does not possess a high school diploma. One in seven Canadians does, however, possess a college degree. In most areas across Canada, adult high school education is publically funded just as primary, secondary, and post-secondary are – unlike in America, where adult high school correlates more with college rather than actual publically funded schooling. In relation to English education, the majority of areas across Canada do teach both French and English. In most places, English is the secondary language; however, in some areas, English is the primary language and French is the secondary. In Canada’s Constitution, specifically Section 23, it guarantees the rights for those who speak minority languages a fair and equal educational opportunity. In relation to the educational field and the workforce, those who migrate to Canada and work, establish, and educate themselves, will soon be able to gain citizenship this way.
Canada is dominant in the world’s economy when it comes to both imports and exports. Currently, Canada ranks tenth in the world’s rankings of exports and twelfth in the rankings of imports. Even though Canada dominates in terms of world trade, their major trading partner is the United States. According to Economy Watch, over three quarters of Canada’s exports are to the United States and over half of their imports are from the United States. However, trade between the two nations has not always been this substantial. It only rose in 1989 when the Free Trade Agreement was established between the two nations as well as the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1994. After both of these became implemented, trade between the two nations rose fifty-two percent. Without one another, the food supply for both countries would be drastically different.
In terms of agriculture, the United States provides nearly half of Canada’s foods. Canada, on the other hand, provides the United States nearly twenty percent of their food goods. In addition to agricultural goods, Canada also supplies the United States with oil. Sixteen percent of the United States’ oil is supplied by Canada. In terms of total exports, in 2010, their total value of exports was a massive amount: over four-hundred and six billion. Their primary exports are commodities. These commodities include automotive parts, vehicles, and electricity. The value of imports in 2010 was just about the same and the imported are the same. These imports included commodities such as vehicles and other consumer goods. Canada’s primary import and export partners include the following: the United States, the United Kingdom, Mexico and China. A common misconception would be that China is the major trading partner for every country; however, in the case of both the United States and Canada, this is not the case. Canada and the United States both provide one another a massive amount of goods per year spanning into the billions of dollars.
Canada has shown gross domestic product growth since 2009. In 2009, the percentage was -2.8. In 2010, the gross domestic product increased drastically to a percentage of 3.2. In 2011, however, the gross domestic product took a slight decline to a percentage of 2.5. In 2012, it continued to decline with a percentage of 2.1. These statistics only represent recent years. If we look at data from year’s past, it is very compelling to see the growth or lack thereof. In 2004, the gross domestic product growth was at the percentage of 3.1. This is in comparison to the year 2008, where the only growth was at a mere percentage of 0.7. In terms of composition by sector, services dominate with over seventy percent. Industry and agriculture follow greatly behind with industry being just over twenty-seven percent and agriculture being at nearly two percent.
Other percentages and statistics involving gross domestic product include the market value of openly traded shares, public debt, and the public deficit. In 2009, the market for openly traded shares was over one and a half trillion dollars. In 2010, the value nearly doubled at just over two trillion dollars. In 2011, the value dropped to just under two trillion dollars. In terms of public debt, a steady increase has been occurring over the past half-decade with a slight decrease in recent years. In 2008, the percentage of public debt was just over seventy percent in 2008, nearly eight-four percent in 2009, a tad over eighty-five percent in 2010, a slight drop to precisely eight-five percent in 2011, and another slight decrease in 2012 with it being at just under eighty-five percent. In terms of public deficit, however, it decreases then increases, the opposite of the public debt increases. In 2008, this percentage was just over zero percent. In 2009, this percentage decreased in the negatives to nearly five percent. In 2010, this percentage remained in the negatives and increased to just over five and a half percent. In 2011, this percentage increased, yet still remained in the negatives at precisely four and a half percent. In 2012, this percentage increased once again, yet, continued to remain in the negatives at just over three and a half percent. Both the public deficit and the public debt contribute to the foundation of society and these increasing and decreasing percentages depict a cohesive or problematic society. In the case of Canada, the percentages depict an ever-varying society.
Canada has a rather compelling foreign policy. Many would even suggest it is “small-minded.” Canada essentially has an empire of resources without being necessarily threatened by other countries. The central point within the foreign policy of Canada is to always remain on good terms with the United States. Both countries support one another and it simply would not make sense to be on one another’s bad side. Canada’s relations with the United States trump every other relation on the planet because they are the world’s largest trading partners between one another. Even though Canada disagrees with American politics on occasion regarding previous wars and the current war on terrorism, the relation between the two countries remains both strong and cohesive.
Even though employment and other aspects of civilization may not necessarily be up to par, Canada maintains their dominance in the world’s economy. Canada avoids conflict by being a powerhouse in the market of importing and exporting goods throughout the world, especially with their American counterparts. Being established as one of the seven richest nations on the planet within the infamous G7, Canada embodies what a country should depict. Helping those who natively speak English utilize French as a second language, befriending nations as a means to import and export quality goods and merchandise, and prioritizing education fields and the workforce are all elements of Canada being one of the greatest countries on the planet.
“Canada Exports, Imports & Trade.” Economy Watch. N.p., 11 Mar. 2010. Web. 04 Mar. 2014.
“Canada GDP Data & Country Report.” Global Finance. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2014.
“Indicators of Well-Being in Canada.” Employment and Social Development of Canada. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2014.
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