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Canada welcomed highest number of Indian immigrants in 2021

Canada welcomed highest number of Indian immigrants

Despite the international border restrictions and the impact of the pandemic, Canada welcomed the highest number of Indian immigrants to the country in 2021, compared to any of the previous years. India is the only country among the three most important source countries to have sent more immigrants to Canada in 2021 than in 2019, the last full year when immigration was not affected by the pandemic.

The final data for the entire year is not available, but as in October 2021, the total number of Indian immigrants welcomed by Canada as permanent residents was 96660. This number is 125 per cent more compared to the entire year of 2020, when the number was only 53795.

In 2021, Canada met its annual immigration target and welcomed more than 401000 new immigrants in total. As in October 2021, the number of immigrants admitted by Canada from major source countries is as follows:

Country Number of New Permanent Residents
India 96,660
China 24,995
Philippines 13,310
Nigeria 12,500
France 10,510
United States 9,525
Brazil 9,270
Iran 8,930
Pakistan 6,625
South Korea 6,590


Though the first four countries retained their positions, fifth spot was taken over by France from Pakistan. South Korea also slid down to tenth position from ninth.

Experts estimate that, by the end of this year, India will have contributed at least 15 per cent more immigrants to Canada. A majority of immigrants admitted to Canada this year came through economic immigration programs. Out of the 313880 immigrants who were admitted in the first 10 months of the year, 197865 came through economic immigration programs, which mean around 63%. The number of immigrants admitted through family sponsorship programs during the same period was 62645, around 19. 8 per cent.

Over the past few years, Canada has become a favourite destination for immigrants from India. Indo-Canadians are one of the fastest growing communities in Canada and the country has the world’s eighth largest Indian diaspora. While the number of new Indian permanent residents in Canada in 2016 was 39340, in 2019, it rose to 80685, by 105 per cent. Indians also have good political representation in the country. In the parliament elections of 2021, 17 Indo-Canadians were elected, including Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan. Better living standards, more career opportunities and social security benefits are the major factors that make Canada attractive for Indians.

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