Northern Economic Diversification Index

The Northern Economic Diversification Index (NEDI) is an important part of the Agency's annual Report on Plans and Priorities and serves as a measure of the state of economic diversity in Canada's territories. It is a performance indicator of the effectiveness of CanNor's economic development programs in support of strong, diversified and dynamic economies in the North.

Economic diversity is generally associated with stable economies.  Diversified economies assist the growth of leading industry sectors through strong support industries, and sustain longer term economic prosperity through various industry lifecycles.

Table of contents

NEDI Calculation Methodology

The NEDI is calculated as: (1 – sum of squares of the (decimal) proportions of each of 20 industry sectors in the total gross domestic product (GDP) at basic prices) x 100. The data source is Statistics Canada (CANSIM table 379-0030).

Higher EDI values indicate more diversified economies.

Economic Diversity in Canada

The chart below shows the share of industry sectors according to their relative contribution to the Canadian economy. Based on the 2015 data from Statistics Canada (GDP at basic prices), the Canadian economy is comprised of a broad range of sectors.

Canada's Economic Diversity - 2015
This graph shows the contribution of Canadian industry sectors as a percentage of total 2015 GDP.
  • Real estate and rental and leasing represented 12.9%.
  • Manufacturing represented 10.6%.
  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 7.9%.
  • Construction represented 7.2%.
  • Finance and insurance represented 7.0%.
  • Health Care and Social Assistance represented 6.8%.
  • Public Administration represented 6.4%.
  • Wholesale trade represented 5.8%.
  • Retail trade represented 5.4%.
  • Professional, scientific and technical services represented 5.4%.
  • Educational Services represented 5.2%.
  • Transportation and warehousing represented 4.3%.
  • Information and cultural industries represented 3.1%.
  • Administrative and support, waste management and remediation services represented 2.6%.
  • Utilities represented 2.3%.
  • Accommodation and food services represented 2.1%.
  • Other services (except public administration) represented 2.0%.
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting represented 1.6%.
  • Arts, entertainment and recreation represented 0.7%.
  • Management of companies and enterprises represented 0.7%.

Economic Diversity in the North – Compared to National Economic Diversity

The chart below shows the economic diversity of each province and territory as well as the national aggregate economic diversity index and the northern aggregate economic diversity index. The EDI values for Canada and the North are calculated by the GDP proportion of each industry sector based on the sum of the GDP across all jurisdictions for Canada, and across the territories for the North. 

In 2015, the North was significantly less diversified than Canada as whole.  The territories are among the five least diversified jurisdictions in Canada.

Pan-Canadian EDI 2015
This chart shows the economic diversity of each province and territory as well as the national aggregate economic diversity index and aggregate Northern economic diversity index for 2015.

The indices are:

  • Canada 92.99
  • Manitoba 93.06
  • New Brunswick 92.67
  • Quebec 92.60
  • British Columbia 92.24
  • Ontario 92.24
  • Nova Scotia 91.88
  • Prince Edward Island 91.79
  • Saskatchewan 91.10
  • North 89.05
  • Yukon 88.73
  • Alberta 88.41
  • Northwest Territories 88.35
  • Nunavut 88.31
  • Newfoundland and Labrador 87.42

This is a persistent trend as the North remained significantly less diversified than Canada's national economy throughout the 2011 to 2015 period.

Economic Diversity in the North and Canada – A comparison 2011-2015
Text description: This graph shows the economic diversification indices for Canada and the North from 2011 to 2015.
  • In 2011, the index for the North was 88.75 and 93.04 for Canada.
  • In 2012, the index for the North was 88.42, and 93.03 for Canada.
  • In 2013, the index for the North was 88.71, and 93.04 for Canada.
  • In 2014, the index for the North was 88.54, and 93.00 for Canada.
  • In 2015, the index for the North was 89.05 and 92.99 for Canada.

Economic Diversity in Nunavut

In 2015, public administration was the largest contributor to Nunavut’s economy at 19.5% of the GDP. Although this represents a slight increase from 2014, it is lower than the 5-year high of 22.2% in 2011. As a result of a slowdown due to low commodity prices, the mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction experienced a contraction in 2015, falling to 17.5% from 17.9% in 2014. The construction sector also experienced a drop as its outlook is closely tied to investments made by mining companies.

Economic Diversity in Nunavut – 2015
Text description: This graph shows the contribution of Nunavut industry sectors as a percentage of total 2015 GDP.
  • Public administration represented 19.5%.
  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 17.5%.
  • Construction represented 13.5%.
  • Real estate and rental and leasing represented 11.9%.
  • Educational services represented 8.3%.
  • Health care and social assistance represented 5.9%.
  • Retail trade represented 3.9%.
  • Utilities represented 2.8%.
  • Administrative and support, waste management, and remediation services represented 2.4%.
  • Information and cultural industries represented 2.4%.
  • Transportation and warehousing represented 2.4%.
  • Finance and insurance represented 2.1%.
  • Wholesale trade represented 1.9%.
  • Professional, scientific and technical services represented 1.4%.
  • Accommodation and food services represented 1.4%.
  • Other services (other than public administration) represented 1.3%.
  • Management of companies and enterprises represented 0.5%.
  • Manufacturing represented 0.4%.
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting represented 0.3%.
  • Arts, entertainment and recreation represented 0.1%.
Primary sectors in Nunavut – 2011 to 2015
Text description: This graph shows the contribution of the four leading Nunavut industry sectors as a percentage of total GDP from 2011 to 2015.
  • In 2011, public administration represented 22.2%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 14.8%, construction represented 11.1%, and real estate and rental and leasing represented 12.1%.
  • In 2012, public administration represented 21.6%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 16.8%, construction represented 7.8%, and real estate and rental and leasing represented 12.2%.
  • In 2013, public administration represented 19.6%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 17.9%, construction represented 11.1%, and real estate and rental and leasing represented 11.5%.
  • In 2014, public administration represented 19.1%, mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction represented 17.9%, construction represented 14.8 %, and real estate and rental and leasing represented 11.5%.
  • In 2015, public administration represented 19.5%, mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction represented 17.5%, construction represented 13.5 %, and real estate and rental and leasing represented 11.9%.

Economic Diversity in the Northwest Territories

In 2015, mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction remained the largest sector in the NWT. However at 22.9%, this sector dropped from the previous year and from its 5 year high of 26.9% in 2011. The construction sector has grown substantially over the last five years increasing, its contribution to the territorial GDP from 5.9% in 2011 to 14.1% in 2015. This growth is attributed to both private and public infrastructure investments, including the construction of the Gahcho Kué diamond mine and the construction of the all-weather road to Tuktoyaktuk.

Economic diversity in the NWT – 2015
Text description: This graph shows the contribution of Northwest Territories industry sectors as a percentage of total 2015 GDP.
  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 22.9%.
  • Public administration represented 14.5%.
  • Construction represented 14.1%.
  • Real estate and rental and leasing represented 7.7%
  • Transportation and warehousing represented 7.5%.
  • Health care and social assistance represented 6.0%.
  • Retail trade represented 4.8%.
  • Educational services represented 4.3%.
  • Wholesale trade represented 3.4%.
  • Finance and insurance represented 2.9%.
  • Professional, scientific and technical services represented 2.3%.
  • Information and cultural industries represented 2.1%.
  • Accommodation and food services represented 1.7%.
  • Administrative and support, waste management, and remediation services represented 1.7%.
  • Utilities represented 1.2%.
  • Other services (other than public administration) represented 1.0%.
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting represented 0.6%.
  • Management of companies and enterprises represented 0.6%.
  • Arts, entertainment and recreation represented 0.3%.
  • Manufacturing represented 0.3%.
Primary sectors in the NWT – 2011 to 2015
Text description: This graph shows the contribution of the four leading Northwest Territories industry sectors as a percentage of total GDP from 2011 to 2015.
  • In 2011, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 26.9%, public administration represented 15.5%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 8.4% and construction represented 5.9%.
  • In 2012, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 24.9%, public administration represented 15.8%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 8.5%, and construction represented 6.6%.
  • In 2013, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 23.0%, public administration represented 15.3%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 8.3%, and construction represented 10.4%.
  • In 2014, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 24.1%, public administration represented 14.6%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 7.8%, and construction represented 12.2%.
  • In 2015, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 22.9%, public administration represented 14.5%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 7.7%, and construction represented 14.1%.

Economic Diversity in Yukon

The mining sector in Yukon experienced a contraction, which in 2015 saw its share of GDP drop to 11.6% from 19.1% in 2014. As a result, the real estate sector now surpasses the mineral extraction sector. At 23%, the public administration is the largest that it has been over the past five years. This increase is largely attributed to the significant contraction of the mining sector but also an increase in public administration, as its 2015 level was $38 million higher than it was in 2010.

Economic Diversity in Yukon - 2015
Text description: This graph shows the contribution of Yukon’s industry sectors as a percentage of total 2015 GDP.
  • Public administration represented 23.0%.
  • Real estate and rental and leasing represented 14.3%
  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 11.6%.
  • Construction represented 8.5%.
  • Health care and social assistance represented 8.2%.
  • Educational services represented 5.7%.
  • Retail trade represented 5.1%.
  • Finance and insurance represented 3.6%.
  • Transportation and warehousing represented 3.2%.
  • Accommodation and food services represented 3.1%.
  • Professional, scientific and technical services represented 2.9%.
  • Information and cultural industries represented 2.9%.
  • Utilities represented 1.9%.
  • Other services (other than public administration) represented 1.6%.
  • Administrative and support, waste management, and remediation services represented 1.4%.
  • Wholesale trade represented 1.4%.
  • Manufacturing represented 0.6%.
  • Arts, entertainment and recreation represented 0.4%.
  • Management of companies and enterprises represented 0.3%.
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting represented 0.2%.
Primary sectors in Yukon – 2011 to 2015
Text description: This graph shows the contribution of the four leading Yukon industry sectors as a percentage of total GDP from 2011 to 2015.
  • In 2011, public administration represented 21.5%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 14.9%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 12.3%, and construction represented 11.2%.
  • In 2012, public administration represented 20.1%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 21.9%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 12.1%, and construction represented 7.2%.
  • In 2013, public administration represented 20.7%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 21.0%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 12.7%, and construction represented 7.2%.
  • In 2014, public administration represented 21.3%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 19.1%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 13.1%, and construction represented 7.6%.
  • In 2015, public administration represented 23.0%, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction represented 11.6%, real estate and rental and leasing represented 14.3%, and construction represented 8.5%.
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