Commerce & Economy

Diversity and demographics drive change

One hundred years ago, natural resources were the primary economic driver in the Comox Valley. Today, there is less focus on mining and forestry and more development in hospitality and tourism, agri-business and new technologies … making the Comox Valley one of the fastest growing rural communities in the Province of British Columbia.

Key Economic Drivers

The economy on Vancouver Island in general, and the Comox Valley in particular, has been making a slow but steady recovery since the recession started in 2009.

Demographic Shift: As Baby Boomers across Canada approach retirement, many set their sights on Island living. They are moving to the Comox Valley in record numbers.

Surge in Sales and Service: With a decrease in resource-based jobs and an aging population, the retail, hospitality and tourism, healthcare and personal care industry sectors are becoming increasingly important.

Survival of the Fittest: In today’s economy, an ability to adapt to changing market conditions is of paramount importance. Comox Valley businesses are embracing the challenge by successfully integrating the Internet, green technology and other novel enterprises in order to not only survive, but also thrive.

Construction Boom: There has been a welcome increase in spending on large commercial projects and public infrastructure.

Industry Resurgence: A rebound in traditional, resource-based industries has been attributed to developments in world markets, as well as innovative production strategies, new marketing techniques and green initiatives.

Emphasis on Skilled Labour: There is a growing demand for skilled labour to fill trades and technical positions.

Changing Curricula: Post-secondary institutions are moving pro-actively to meet the demand for skilled labour.

Source: A Guide to the BC Economy and Labour Market ( as published in Coastal Chronicles, Summer 2011, reprinted with permission.

For a complete statistic analysis of the Comox Valley, visit:

MNP Business Leaders Survey - January 2015

Developed in partnership with the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce and Comox Valley Economic Development Society (CVEDS), the MNP Business Leaders Survey is a short pulse survey designed to provide an economic snapshot of the local business community. The goal of the survey is to generate baseline information so the Chamber, CVEDS and MNP and other partners in the community can work together to improve the local business climate and help local businesses be more successful. Click here to access the survey results.

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