Containerized seafood exports a major economic driver for Nova Scotia

This graphic shows the economic impact of containerized cargo going through the Port of Halifax. Containerized seafood exports have three times the economic impact of standard containerized cargo. Supplied by the Port of Halifax

Halifax, N.S. — The movement of containerized cargo through the Port of Halifax is a major contributor to the economy of Nova Scotia. The most recent economic impact report, produced by Chris Lowe Planning and Management Group, shows the port’s economic output in 2015/16 was $1.706 billion, up 5.9 per cent from the last economic impact update to the end of 2013.

“The most remarkable statistic to come out of this economic impact report is the value of a seafood container,” says Karen Oldfield, president and CEO, Halifax Port Authority. “With exports taken as a whole, it’s crystal clear how Nova Scotia exports are fundamental to the well-being of our province.”

On average, each standard container exported through the Port of Halifax is worth $25,000 to the Nova Scotia economy in terms of direct and spin-off economic benefits. However, an export container filled with Nova Scotia seafood is worth an estimated $73,650, three times that of a standard container, in direct and spin-off economic benefits to the economy.

Through the Port of Halifax in 2015, Nova Scotia container exporters contributed more than $1.9 billion to the province’s gross output. Combined with port operations, the total impact of the Port of Halifax on Nova Scotia’s gross output is $3.631 billion with the direct portion being $1.962 billion.

Containerized cargo facilities and marine services at the Port of Halifax enabled Nova Scotia businesses in 2015 to export 76,993 standard shipping containers into international markets.

Overall findings of the 2015/16 Port of Halifax Economic Impact Study

• The Port of Halifax generates $1.706 billion in economic output, up 5.9 per cent
• The port enables Nova Scotia exporters to contribute $1.9 billion to provincial gross output (new finding)
• Combined Port of Halifax operations output and exporter output is $3.631 billion in economic benefit to Nova Scotia (new finding)
• $809 million in Gross Domestic Product (up 8.8 per cent)
• 12,446 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs resulting from port operations (up 5.3 per cent)
• 24,571 FTE jobs derived from Nova Scotia container exporters (new finding)
• 37,017 total FTE jobs (new finding)
• $584 million wages and salaries resulting from port activity (up 5.8 per cent) Halifax Seaport and Cruise:
• In 2016, the total economic output for Halifax Cruise was $122.9 million (up 17.8 per cent)
• The Halifax Seaport attracts between 1.2 and 1.3 million visitors annually
• Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market customers generated more than $23.4 million in sales at the market and $18.7 million in sales in surrounding businesses, resulting in more than $42 million in economic benefit.

“Containerized cargo is a significant economic driver in our province,” Oldfield says. “It means jobs for the men and women who handle the cargo; it means opportunities for those in the trucking and rail industries; work for those in marine services; and employment in logistics and supply chain support facilities found throughout Burnside Industrial Park and Bayer’s Lake where Nova Scotia products are packaged and prepared for export.”

A full copy of the report can be
found online at


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here