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Canada’s population jumps 2.9 per cent in one year

By Brad Perry Sep 28, 2023 | 6:46 AM

Canada has recorded its highest one-year population growth rate in nearly seven decades, according to Statistics Canada.

The agency’s latest population estimates released Wednesday show a 2.9 per cent increase for the year ending July 1, 2023.

It was the highest population growth since the 3.3 per cent increase in 1957 during the Hungarian refugee crisis and the height of the baby boom.

Our country’s population grew by an estimated 1.16 million people between July 2022 and July 2023 to reach nearly 40.1 million.

Net international migration was the main reason, accounting for 98 per cent of the growth, according to StatCan.

There were around 2.2 million non-permanent residents living in Canada as of July, up from 1.5 million a year earlier, with an increase in work and study permits accounting for most of the change.

StatCan said the difference between births and deaths accounted for just two per cent of the population growth over the past year.

The agency noted that fertility levels reached record lows in 2022 with 1.33 children per woman, compared with 1.44 children per woman in 2021.

Population growth was recorded across the country, with Alberta seeing the highest increase at four per cent.

Seven provinces saw their population increase at rates never observed since comparable data exists: Prince Edward Island (3.9 per cent), Nova Scotia (3.2 per cent), New Brunswick (3.1 per cent), Quebec (2.3 per cent), Ontario (3.0 per cent), Manitoba (2.9 per cent), and Saskatchewan (2.6 per cent).

British Columbia saw a population growth rate of three per cent, while Newfoundland and Labrador’s rate was the lowest among provinces at 1.3 per cent.

You can view the full report on Statistics Canada’s website.