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Industry Profile

Transportation and Warehousing

Industry Profile

Alberta's transportation and warehousing industry stores and moves the goods that Albertans produce. In 2015, it exported goods worth $92.3 billion from the province. Energy products, shipped by pipeline and rail, accounted for most of the exports, followed by agricultural goods and processed food and beverages. The industry also moves people. In 2015, the Calgary and Edmonton airports collectively handled 23.5 million passengers, a combined volume surpassed in Canada only by Toronto's Pearson International Airport.

Gross domestic product (GDP) measures the overall size of an economy. In 2015, the transportation and warehousing industry made up 4.2% of Alberta's GDP. This represents a 0.1% reduction from 2012.

Sectors

  • goods transported by rail, water, air, road, or pipeline
  • passengers transported by rail, water, air or road
  • warehousing or storage of goods

Workforce

The transportation and warehousing industry employed 139,300 people in 2015. This is an increase of 19,500 jobs (16.3%) from 2013.

  • 100,800 men worked in the industry in 2015 (up 12.5% from 2013).
  • 38,500 women worked in the industry in 2015 (up 27.5% from 2013).

Wages

The average 2015 hourly wage of $29.31 for the transportation and warehousing industry was above the provincial average of $29.06.

Taxi and Limousine Driver and Chauffeur
$17.46
Average Hourly Wage
Transportation Manager
$41.29
Average Hourly Wage

Industry Performance

Between 2012 and 2015, investment in the industry almost doubled to $9.2 billion, an indication of how crucial market access is to Alberta's economic growth. Oil export volume continued to grow, which was a positive for the transportation industry. Furthermore, growing exports in other sectors have allowed the transportation and warehousing industry to expand. For example, crop and livestock export volumes rose by 50.0% between 2005 and 2015, while exports of processed food and beverages rose by 30.0% between 2013 and 2015, with a weaker Canadian dollar accounting for much of the increase.

Industry Outlook

As oil sands projects shift from construction to production, more than 500,000 barrels of bitumen are expected to come online per day. To bring this bitumen to market, transportation infrastructure will have to be expanded. The Conference Board of Canada, a not-for-profit research organization, expects the volume of crude shipped by rail to more than triple between 2015 and 2018. If pipelines are in place by then, rail shipments are expected to fall. However, if pipelines are not constructed, this will result in higher transportation costs.

In terms of individual transportation, the lacklustre economy is expected to mean less domestic business travel in the short-term. However, the weak Canadian dollar will encourage inbound transportation from American and overseas tourism.

Industry Employment Trends

Employment in this industry is expected to grow at an average rate of 0.3% from 2016 to 2019.

OCCinfo has more information about occupations in Alberta, including details about duties, working conditions, educational requirements, employment outlook, and salary ranges. You can also find reports on region-specific information about wages, job vacancies, and hiring difficulties in this industry. Visit the Survey Analysis to learn more.

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