Canadian cities like Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver have always remained popular destinations for new immigrants. However, giving a boost to regional immigration to Canada, newcomers nowadays are finding small and mid-sized cities too as the best place to settle in Canada.
According to a recent Ryerson University paper, the number of new immigrants choosing to settle in small and medium cities of Canada increased to 45 percent during the period between 2013 and 2019. During the same period, the number of new immigrants increased by almost 40 percent in the Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) in the rest of Canada.
The Canadian cities of Toronto and Vancouver have some of the highest immigration rates in the country. While the immigration rate of Toronto is 163 per 10000 residents, the immigration rate of Vancouver is 128 per 10000 residents.
At the same time, there are 14 smaller urban centres in Canada which has an immigration rate of more than 100 per 10000 residents. The immigration rates in Regina and Saskatoon in Saskatchewan is 193 and 178 per 10000 residents respectively. These rates are higher than that of Toronto.
The other 12 smaller urban centres with high immigration rates are Halifax, Charlottetown, Fredericton, Moncton, Swift Current, Winkler, Steinbach, Brandon, Thompson, Brooks, High River and Wood Buffalo. These smaller urban centres welcomed a high number of immigrants owing to an aging population and dwindling workforce. A major reason why these centres are opening their gates to more immigrants is the declining natural population, which means birth rate is higher than death rate. So they are compelled to depend on immigration to sustain a healthy population growth. However, the COVID-19 pandemic affected the influx of immigrants to these urban centres because of the travel restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of the disease.
Factors that raised levels of regional immigration to Canada
It has been proved that regional immigration to Canada is mutually beneficial for both the immigrants as well as the local economy. While the immigrants fill the gaps in labour supply, they get jobs in return.
Most of the provinces are making the most of Provincial Nominee Programs(PNPs) to welcome more skilled workers to their labour market. PNPs are especially beneficial for less populous provinces which need more workers to support their economies. The enhanced PNPs aligned with the Express Entry system allow the provinces to choose immigration candidates, who can meet the requirements of their labour markets, from the Express Entry pool. There has been a steady increase in the number of immigrants admitted through PNPs in the past few years. The number of PNP immigrants in 2014 was 47600. In 2019, it rose to 68600.
Another immigration program of Canada that aims to promote regional immigration, called the Atlantic Immigration Pilot, has also helped regions to welcome more immigrants. In 2019, a total of 1141 settled in the Atlantic region of Canada through this program. The most popular province for AIP candidates is New Brunswick followed by Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island.
Yet another reason for the increase in regional immigration to Canada is the fact that the country has been steadily increasing the immigration levels in the past few years. In the coming three years, Canada is planning to welcome 1.2 million new immigrants. While about 80000 candidates will be welcomed through PNP programs every year, about 6000 immigration candidates will come to Canada through AIP.
Do you wish to migration to Canada through regional immigration programs? Know about them in details and check your eligibility by contacting the expert Canada immigration consultants of CanApprove.