Keystone Excavating Ltd. has announced it is closing its doors, saying it can’t continue to provide the same quality of work “within the macro business environment in Alberta.”“The macro business environment has everything to do with gratuitous government policy, increasing cost of doing business in Alberta, and lack of consumer and investor confidence,” the company said in a statement.“To be clear this was our decision, no one is forcing our hand at this.”
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The company, which has offices in Calgary and Edmonton, said it will continue to operate until March 31, 2017.“Often times in business there are cross roads between what the market is and what the market needs to be. We are choosing to work in a place of what the market needs to be.”READ MORE: Alberta could face labour shortage despite layoffsThe closure comes at a time when the province’s construction industry is projected to lose up to 11,000 jobs over 2017, according to a Tuesday statement from BuildForce Canada.The national organization, which represents all sectors of the construction industry, cited low oil prices limiting investment and growth, as well as the completion of several large projects.“While a staggered recovery is expected to start next year, it won’t lift all sectors of construction until about 2024,” BuildForce Canada executive director Rosemary Sparks said. “It’s a complex transition period for industry that needs to ensure it has a skilled workforce trained and ready as the economy turns around.”The group’s 2017-2026 “Construction and Maintenance Looking Forward” forecast suggests the pace of overall job losses will ease in 2017, but non-residential construction employment will decrease into 2018.“Commercial and industrial building is expected to decline this year and next,” the company said in a release. “Recovery in oil sands and other engineering-related work likely won’t begin until later in the forecast period.”
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