Nunavut’s gross domestic product (GDP) increased by 3.5 per cent in 2020 despite the onslaught of COVID-19, fresh data from Statistics Canada shows.
Gold and silver ore mining grew by 23.2 per cent while iron ore mining rose in value by 34.4 per cent.
Statistics Canada cited higher mineral prices for a 19.7 per cent increase in support activities for mining.
The picture wasn’t nearly as rosy outside of the mining industry, however. Construction output tumbled by 23.4 per cent, primarily due to a drop in engineering construction at mine sites.
Wholesale trade dropped by 12.3 per cent due to lesser demand for machinery, equipment and supplies, petroleum products and building materials, also tied to completion of construction at mine sites.
Services-producing industries declined by 2.3 per cent, with COVID-19-related restrictions to blame. Air transportation (-42.6 per cent), food and drinking places (-30.7 per cent), accommodation (-27.9 per cent) and education (-7.9 per cent) all contracted.
However, retail trade climbed 8.6 per cent while finance and insurance industries grew 7.1 per cent.
Nunavut was one of only two Canadian jurisdictions to show GDP growth in 2020. The other was Yukon, at 1.1 per cent.