Alberta’s fiscal outlook has improved slightly, but is still billions of dollars in the red.
Finance Minister Joe Ceci said on Monday the estimated deficit for the year has been revised to $10.8 billion.
That’s a decrease of $78 million from the first quarter but still $449 million dollars higher than what was projected in the last budget.
READ MORE: Alberta budget deficit up to $6.4B last year
Ceci made the announcement in his second-quarter update for the 2016-17 budget.
He said various factors have contributed to the change in the budget deficit.
The finance minister said there are signs Alberta’s economy is turning around, but that it will take some time for the economy to fully recover.
“We’re seeing positive signs across some indicators that will cause greater stability for Albertans,” Ceci said. “There’s too many Albertans still out of work, there are too many families still experiencing hardships.”
“When a person loses there job, it is never good news. I mean it is challenging for them as an individual and for their families. What we want to see as we go forward is all sectors improve with job growth.”
He said the province added 25,000 jobs in the last three months and manufacturing shipments have increased.
The province expects Alberta’s economy to grow by 2.3 per cent in 2017, supported by wildfire reconstruction, a rebound in oil production and prices, as well as additional investments in public-sector infrastructure.