Alberta: Boundless opportunity in Alberta

Advantages

For over two decades, Alberta has had Canada’s highest average annual economic growth, fueled by abundant natural resources, a diverse economy and commitment to support innovation and entrepreneurship. Alberta has long been a hub for exploration and a lure for investment; as a fur-trading outpost, a gateway to the north during the Klondike Gold Rush and currently with abundant oil and natural gas reserves. From the stunning Rocky Mountains to the fertile plains of the south and the resources of the north, Alberta retains its appeal as a place to settle, invest and prosper.

  • Competitive business tax environment
    • No provincial retail sales tax (PST), provincial capital taxes, payroll taxes or machinery and equipment taxes and the lowest gasoline tax amongst Canadian provinces.  
    • Lowest combined federal and provincial corporate tax rate in the country at 25%.
  • Consistently the highest investment per capita among provinces.
  • World class universities and research facilities and collaboration through Campus Alberta and Alberta Innovates
  • A strong manufacturing sector with exports growing by 41% between 2002 and 2012, and the agricultural sector led all sectors with growth of 145%.
  • Abundant Resources:
    • The third largest petroleum reserves in the world, after Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.
    • One of the world’s most productive agricultural economies, with a total farm area of 50.5 million acres. Agricultural exports led all sectors with growth of 145% between 2002 and 2012.
    • Fifty-eight per cent or 38 million hectares of Alberta is forested, about 60 per cent of which is considered suitable for harvest.
  • Diverse economy with energy accounts making up one quarter of provincial GDP and financial, real-estate and business and commercial services making up another quarter.
  • Commitment to fiscal responsibility by government. As of March 2012, Alberta has:
    • About $14.5 billion in Alberta’s Heritage Trust Fund (long-term savings).
    • About $7.5 billion in Alberta’s Sustainability Fund (savings from past surpluses).
  • For more, see Alberta Economic Highlights

Work Force

  • A diverse workforce: One in six Albertans was born outside of Canada, making Alberta one of the most multi-national and multi-cultural provinces in the country.
  • A growing workforce: As of July 1st, 2013, Alberta’s population was estimated at 4,025,074, a 3.51% increase from a year earlier.
  • An educated workforce: In 2012, 63.3% of the labour force aged twenty-five years and older reported holding a university degree or post-secondary diploma or certificate.
  • A productive workforce: The most productive workforce among Canadian provinces, a position it has held at least since 1985. This is driven in part by high capital investment.

Provincial Incentives

  • 10% refundable provincial tax credit for scientific research and experimental development encouraging research and development in Alberta. It is worth up to $400,000 annually per company.
  • Alberta Innovation Vouchers worth $15,000 or $50,000 to help small early-stage technology and knowledge-driven businesses in Alberta get their ideas and products to market faster.
  • Alberta Enterprise Corporation and a growing venture capital industry.
  • To find out more about investing in Alberta, see AlbertaCanada.com

Sector Strengths

  • Aerospace and defence
  • Agrifood
  • Building products and technologies
  • Engineering and construction
  • Environmental products and services
  • Financial services
  • Information and communication technologies
  • Life sciences
  • Metal manufacturing
  • Oil and gas
  • Refining, Petrochemicals and Biochemicals
  • Tourism
  • Transportation and international logistics
Map of Canada with the province of Alberta highlighted.

Provincial Profile

Population: 4,025,074

Major cities: Edmonton, Calgary