Significant construction labour shortage expected in next three years: BuildForce Canada


Recruitment requirements in the construction industry might pose a significant challenge over the next three years, according to the latest labour forecast released by BuildForce Canada.

This may be the largest surge in engineering construction in recent memory, and it’s happening at a time when many skilled trades are already in short supply,” said Bill Ferreira, executive director of BuildForce Canada.

According to the report, as many as 16,000 new workers will be needed as pipeline construction, transportation and liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects continue to ramp up in the province, the most significant expansion in construction pace being between 2019 and 2020.

“BC’s construction workforce will need to expand by up to 23% by 2021 to meet project requirements. That takes careful planning.” 

It is expected that between 2022 and 2025, employment will decline but stay well above current levels.

The report also found that new housing-related employment will experience a decline to 23,700 jobs following a five-year expansion plan and that more than 8,000 workers will be relinquished as large-scale projects wind down after 2021.

It is expected that residential construction may recede starting this year through to 2024 as major condo projects near completion.