New Brunswick Flag
New Brunswick is one of four Atlantic provinces on the east coast of Canada. According to the Constitution of Canada, New Brunswick is the only bilingual province. About two thirds of the population declare themselves anglophones and a third francophones. One third of the population describes themselves as bilingual. Atypically for Canada, only about half of the population lives in urban areas, mostly in Greater Moncton, Greater Saint John and the capital Fredericton.
Unlike the other Maritime provinces, New Brunswick's terrain is mostly forested uplands, with much of the land further from the coast, giving it a harsher climate. New Brunswick is 83% forested, and less densely-populated than the rest of the Maritimes.
Being relatively close to Europe, New Brunswick was among the first places in North America to be explored and settled by Europeans, starting with the French in the early 1600s, who displaced the indigenous Mi'kmaq, Maliseet, and the Passamaquoddy peoples. The French settlers were later displaced when the area became part of the British Empire. In 1784, after an influx of refugees from the American Revolutionary War, the province was partitioned from Nova Scotia. In 1785 Saint John became Canada's first incorporated city.
The province prospered in the early 1800s and the population grew rapidly, reaching about a quarter of a million by mid-century. In 1867, New Brunswick was one of four founding provinces of the Canadian Confederation, along with Nova Scotia and the Province of Canada (now Ontario and Quebec).
After Confederation, wooden shipbuilding and lumbering declined, while protectionism disrupted trade ties with New England. The mid-1900s found New Brunswick to be one of the poorest regions of Canada, now mitigated by Canadian transfer payments and improved support for rural areas. As of 2002, provincial gross domestic product was derived as follows: services (about half being government services and public administration) 43%; construction, manufacturing, and utilities 24%; real estate rental 12%; wholesale and retail 11%; agriculture, forestry, fishing, hunting, mining, oil and gas extraction 5%; transportation and warehousing 5%.
Tourism accounts for about 9% of the labour force directly or indirectly. Popular destinations include Fundy National Park and the Hopewell Rocks, Kouchibouguac National Park, and Roosevelt Campobello International Park. In 2013, 64 cruise ships called at Port of Saint John carrying on average 2600 passengers each.