October 21, 2023

How Immigration Assisted Canada with setting record in 2022.

In 2022, Canada achieved a historic milestone in its demographic history. For the first time ever, the country’s population grew by over one million people in a single year, according to data from Statistics Canada. With a record-high population growth of 1,050,110 people between January 1, 2022, and January 1, 2023, Canada marked its highest population growth rate in 65 years. What’s more, nearly all of Canada’s population growth last year was a result of international migration, with 95.9% of the growth coming from temporary residents and immigrants. In this blog post, we will explore how immigration helped Canada set a new population growth record in 2022.


Understanding Canada’s record-high population growth in 2022:

Canada’s record-high population growth in 2022 was largely a result of the country’s reliance on temporary immigration. The country saw a net increase of around 607,782 “non-permanent residents,” which is yet another single-year record high for Canada. This increase in temporary residents was spread across the country, with all of Canada’s provinces and territories seeing growth in the number of work permits, study permits, and asylum claimants.

Additionally, Canada set a new record for the number of immigrants welcomed in one year, with over 437,000 new permanent residents arriving in Canada in 2022. This new record is the result of a conscious effort from the Government of Canada to use immigration as a means of addressing nationwide labor shortages. With high job vacancies and near record-low unemployment rates, the government is welcoming record-high levels of immigration to counteract the challenges created for the national labor market as a result of Canada’s aging natural population and low birth rate.


Breaking down how immigration contributed to Canada’s 2022 population boom:

Immigration played a crucial role in Canada’s 2022 population boom. Here are the three general groups of the international population that contributed to the country’s population growth:

Permanent residents:

Permanent residents, who make up the largest group, were responsible for a significant portion of Canada's population growth in 2022. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) data shows that over 437,000 new permanent residents (PRs) arrived in Canada in 2022 from over 190 countries. More than half of all PRs (58%) came to Canada through economic immigration programs in 2022, while 22.2% of PRs arrived in Canada as family-class immigrants, and 17.2% were admitted as refugees or protected persons.

The following table provides an overview of the distribution of Canadian Permanent Residents (PRs) by province/territory in 2022.

Province/Territory 2022 PRs % of all PRs % change from 2021
Newfoundland and Labrador 3,490 0.7 0.2
Prince Edward Island 2,665 0.6 -
Nova Scotia 12,650 2.8 0.6
New Brunswick 10,205 2.3 1
Quebec 68,685 15.7 3.4
Ontario 184,725 42.2 -6.7
Manitoba 21,645 4.9 0.8
Saskatchewan 21,635 4.9 2.2
Alberta 49,460 11.3 1.4
British Columbia 61,215 14 -3.1
Yukon 455 0.1 -
Northwest Territories 235 0 -0.1
Nunavut 45 0 -
Province not stated 20 0 -0.1
Canada total 437,120 100 -


International students:

International students were also responsible for a significant portion of Canada's population growth in 2022. 551,405 new international students arrived in Canada last year from 184 countries. India led the way with respect to the number of international students, followed by China, the Philippines, France, and Nigeria. Ontario had the highest number of international students (411,000), followed by British Columbia.


Foreign skilled workers:

Foreign skilled workers, who were granted temporary work permits, also played a significant role in Canada's population growth in 2022. Canada saw a net increase of around 607,782 non-permanent residents in 2022, with all provinces and territories seeing growth in the number of work permits, study permits, and asylum claimants.

Overall, immigration has played a crucial role in helping Canada set another population growth record in 2022. The government's effort to increase immigration levels to address labour market needs has been successful in attracting a significant number of permanent residents, international students, and foreign skilled workers to Canada. As Canada looks to continue this trend in the coming years, it remains to be seen how immigration will shape the country


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