Ww1 And Canada

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How did WW1 Affect Canada Economically: In the early years of the war, Canada’s economic situation was bleak. In 1914, wheat yields plunged because of a severe drought. In 1914 and 1915, more than 50,000 people lost their jobs as the railway sector floundered under massive amounts of debt. Furthermore, construction and building activities shrank substantially from a lack of capital. With the outbreak of the war, however, demands for soldiers, nurses, farm labourers and factory workers increased simultaneously. In the later years of the war, Canada’s agricultural output increased markedly because of favourable weather, and Canada exported huge quantities of wheat to the United Kingdom. Prime Minister Robert Borden initiated the new War Measures Act, which provided the government sweeping powers to do whatever it deemed necessary in the war effort. To provide war armaments to the allied armies, the government created the Imperial Munitions Board (IMB). By 1916, the IMB became Canada's largest employer, with 250,000 workers. The IMB produced around one million shells a month, about a third of what the British armies were using on the western front. Maritime shipyards ran in full swing to manufacture submarines, and there were more than 100 plants across the country producing airplane parts. By 1916, unemployment virtually disappeared, and acute shortages of labour were felt in every sector of the economy. A large number of women homemakers moved into the work force. The war placed an unprecedented drain on the financial resources of Canada. By 1915, military spending alone equalled the entire government expenditure of 1913. In 1918, the federal government’s war outlay was more than $2.5 million a day. As a result, the government’s budget deficit rose from 10% of gross national product (GNP) in 1913 to around 15% during the war, when both the deficit and
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