TORONTO -- Ontario added 151,000 new jobs in July, the country’s national statistics agency said, but the majority of them were part-time positions.

After losing more than one million jobs in a three-month time span following the declaration of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ontario added about 378,000 jobs in June. In July, employment in the province grew by 2.2 per cent.

The Labour Force Survey (LFS) released on Friday, which used the week of July 12 to 18 as a sample, said that businesses and workplaces across Canada have continued to reopen after being shuttered due to COVID-19 restrictions. At the same time, the survey was conducted while much of the province was still in Stage 2 of Ontario’s economic reopening plan.

“Although public health restrictions had been substantially eased in most parts of the country—with the exception of some regions of Ontario, including Toronto—some measures remained in place, including physical distancing requirements and restrictions on large gatherings,” Statistics Canada said.

Of the 151,000 jobs added in Ontario, Statistics Canada said that about 145,000 were part-time positions. The agency attributed that number to the fact that part-time workers were hit hardest by the shuttered economy months ago.

“This was due to a number of factors, including part-time work being more prevalent in industries that were most affected by the COVID-19 economic shutdown, namely retail trade and accommodation and food services.”

Ontario’s unemployment rate has now fallen to 11.3 per cent, down from 12.2 per cent the previous month.

In Toronto, employment also rose by about 2.2 per cent, with close to 26,000 jobs added in the city. Statistics Canada says that employment in Toronto has now reached 89.9 per cent of its February, pre-COVID-19 level.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford posted a brief message on social media Friday afternoon saying he was happy to see the July labour numbers.

“What I love are the job numbers today, 150,000 people going back to work, the premier said in a video on Twitter, noting that there is still work to do to rebuild the province’s economy.

“That is great news for the people of Ontario.”

About 419,000 jobs were gained across Canada in the month of July, reducing the national unemployment rate to 10.9 per cent.