VANCOUVER -- For the second month in a row since B.C. entered its record-breaking state of emergency, the province's unemployment rate fell compared to the month before.

According to Statistics Canada's monthly labour force survey released Friday, B.C.'s unemployment rate was at 11.1 per cent in July – down from 13 per cent the month before. Nationwide, the rate was 10.9 per cent, down from 12.3.

Statistics Canada says the country's labour market gained 419,000 jobs last month as more parts of the economy were allowed to reopen. In B.C., the number of employed people increased by 70,000 in July. 

"B.C.'s Restart Plan continues to create positive signs for our economy, but we still have a long way to go as we build a strong recovery," said Michelle Mungall, minister of jobs, economic development and competiveness, in a news release. 

"British Columbians have made enormous sacrifices to keep our communities safe from COVID-19 so far. We all need to be careful to protect the progress we've made."

A total of 164,900 jobs have been lost in B.C. since the start of the pandemic, the province says.

The survey results were gathered from July 12 to 18.