Canada’s population reached 41,012,563 in Q1 2024, a significant increase from the previous year. The population grew by 242,673 people, a 0.6% quarterly increase. This growth rate is consistent with Q4 2023’s 0.6% increase and Q1 2023’s 0.6% increase. 

Most of the population growth (99.3%) in Q1 2024 was due to international migration, including both permanent and temporary immigration. This growth aligns with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s 2024 immigration target. 

Temporary immigration growth occurred before the announcement of caps on permits for non-permanent residents. Without temporary immigration, Canada’s population growth rate would have been 0.3%.

Canada has welcomed over 100,000 immigrants annually since Q3 2021, with 121,758 people in Q1 2024. The Maritime provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island welcomed their highest number of immigrants since 1971, primarily due to the growing demand for skilled workers.

Canada added 131,810 New People (NPRs) to its population in Q1 2024, a higher increase than Q1 2023’s net increase of 108,435. However, this was one of the lowest quarterly net increases since higher levels of temporary migration began in Q2 2022. 

The total number of NPRs in Canada reached a record high of 2,793,594 on April 1, 2024. 

The provinces and territories saw an increase in the estimated number of NPRs, except for Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick, which had fewer NPRs at the end of the quarter. Yukon had the same estimated number of NPRs at the beginning and end of the quarter. The number of people holding only work permits increased by (+94,299), but the number of people holding only study permits decreased by (-24,594). This decrease was greater than that in Q2 2023 (-16,003).

Interprovincial migration in Q1 2024 was slower than the previous year, with 89,408 migrants compared to 97,917. Most provinces and territories experienced net losses in exchanges with other territories, except for Alberta (+12,482), New Brunswick (++1,627), and Yukon (+60). This was the 11th consecutive quarter of net gains for Alberta, following losses in 19 out of 24 quarters from 2015 to 2021. 

The largest contributors to the net gain in Alberta were people moving from Ontario and British Columbia. Ontario had the largest net loss of people to other provinces and territories for the 10th consecutive quarter, posting net losses in interprovincial migration since the first quarter of 2020.

Source: The Star
Source: Financial Post
Source: Statistics Canada