Alberta’s auto industry has big economic impact


Though auto sales have taken a hit in Alberta, the province came out recently with good news that shows how important its auto industry is to the economy.

According to a recent study, Alberta’s new car dealers sold nearly 242,500 new vehicles in 2015, amounting to $16.9 billion in retail sales. This represented 22.4 per cent of Alberta’s total retail sales compared to 20.3 per cent nationally.

Moreover, the auto industry in Alberta had an economic output four times larger than all annual travel and tourism to the Rockies, with $16-billion in operational spending in 2014 injected into other industries.

The report also found that Alberta’s auto industry employees 36,000 full-time workers, making auto dealers one of the largest employers in the province.

“We were pleasantly surprised with how big Alberta’s impact was in comparison to other provinces that have done these reports recently,” said Denis Ducharme, President of the Motor Dealers’ Association of Alberta (MDA) in an interview with Canadian auto dealer, adding this is the first fiscal study his association has conducted on the province.

“We felt that we as an association should know what role the franchised new car dealers play in Alberta’s economy. We felt that the information was very relevant for us…it could make the government aware of what contribution this industry plays in Alberta’s prosperity,” said Ducharme.

Ducharme also noted the $8.4-million given to Alberta charities, which shows how generous dealers are in their local communities.

He told Canadian auto dealer that the report has been circulated amongst municipal governments so they understand the value that new car dealerships bring to local communities.

“We needed to bring some positive news out there,” said Ducharme.

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