While technology companies are often hailed as the future of the economy, that future may have already arrived in Toronto.
A new report from TechToronto, an organization supporting the city’s technology community, identifies that over 400,000 jobs in 2016 were related to technology. The report was produced in collaboration with PwC, the Innovation Policy Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, and CareerBuilder.
The report, “How Technology is Changing Toronto to Employment,” found that the city’s tech ecosystem makes up 15% of all Toronto employment. Over the last 5 years, Toronto has grown tech-related jobs by 14.6%, which is 2xfaster than the rest of the country.
Tech-related jobs earned $24 billion in salaries in 2015, making it one of the highesthourly wage sectors in the city. Toronto’s tech ecosystem is projected to add an additional 20,000 jobs by 2020.
“I believe that Toronto is in an exciting transition from a startup hub to a globally competitive centre of innovation, where companies are born and can scale effectively,” said Toronto Mayor John Tory. “We are the keystone of Canada’s knowledge economy, and have the right ingredients for success including exceptional talent, access to capital, and support services.”
Still, the report believes there is work to be done, especially at the government level. The report made public policy recommendations including the following:
- Introduce fast track immigration visa for tech talents.
- Increase enrollment and diversity in post secondary STEM programs.
- Re-distribute government funds from incumbents to scale-ups and start-ups.