Key Industries

Castlegar has a dynamic and diverse economy rooted in 115 years of history. The economy is driven by five pillars: Forestry, Education, Government/Education, Retail, and Tourism. The breadth of economic activity in Castlegar reflects the City’s role as the geographic and economic centre of the Columbia and Kootenay River valleys (60,000 residents) extending north to Nelson and south to Trail/Rossland. Forestry and mining activity have rebounded out of the recession. Opportunities to diversify and leverage these larger industry anchors include centralized commercial and professional services, and independent and creative entrepreneurial spirits attracted by the combination of soulful people, warm climate mountain geography, and critical mass of population that supports full services

Profiles of 5 B.C. industries (forestry, mining, life sciences, digital media, clean technology) with global competitive advantage are available on the Invest B.C. website.

Leading Local Employers:1

  • Interior Health
  • FortisBC
  • BC Government & Service Employees Union
  • Teck - Trail Operations (1573 employees)
  • Golden Life
  • Canadian Pacific
  • Pacific Insight Electronics Corp. - Nelson (475 employees)
  • School District 20 (Kootenay-Columbia) (443 employees)
  • Zellstoff Celgar (390 employees)
  • Selkirk College (360 employees)
  • BC Hydro
  • Kootenay Savings Credit Union (234 employees at 13 locations in region)
  • Kalesnikoff Lumber (160 employees)
  • International Forest Products Ltd. (154 employees2)
  • Canada Safeway (91 employees)
  • Certified Coating Specialists Inc. (70 employees)
  • Martech Electrical Systems (60 employees)
  • Columbia Basin Trust
  • Canadian Tire (44 employees)
  • Columbia Power Corporation (42 employees)