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Immigration to Canada Trending Down, New Data Shows

By cvf, 05/24/2024


The number of new permanent residents to Canada continued its downward trend for the second consecutive month in March after the high number of new arrivals in January.

That was a repeat of the same pattern seen early last year. 

Monthly immigration to Canada slid another 11 per cent in March this year, down to 34,785 new permanent residents from the 39,090 in February and the 11-month high of 47,745 new permanent residents who arrived in January this year, the latest data from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) reveals.

The 11 percentage point slide in March this year mimics a trend in early 2023, a year which nonetheless closed with record-breaking immigration.

After hitting a high of 50,945 new permanent residents to Canada in January last year, monthly immigration levels tapered off over the following three months to a mere 29,565 new permanent residents in April 2023.


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Immigration levels to Canada in the first quarter of this year have been 16.4 per cent lower overall, with 121,620 new permanent residents arriving in the country during those three months, than during the same period in 2023 when Canada welcomed 145,495 new permanent residents.

With three months of softer permanent immigration numbers than in 2023, Canada welcomed 23,875 fewer new permanent residents in the first quarter of this year, a figure roughly the size of the population of the Yukon’s capital city.

Despite this downward-trending monthly immigration, projecting out from the first three months of this year to the rest of the year would result in 486,480 new permanent residents to Canada this year, up 3.1 per cent from last year’s record-breaking level.

That level of immigration would also allow Canada to almost perfectly hit its target under the 2024-2026 Immigration Levels Plan.

Canada is planning to welcome 485,000 new permanent residents this year, 500,000 in 2025 and then hold the line on immigration in 2026 with another 500,000 newcomers for a total of 1.485 million immigrants to the country over those three years.

“Following the trajectory of the 2023 – 2025 plan, Canada aims to welcome 485,000 new permanent residents in 2024, 500,000 in 2025 and plateau at 500,000 in 2026,” notes the IRCC on its website.

“This plan prioritizes economic growth, and supports family reunification, while responding to humanitarian crises and recognizing the rapid growth in immigration in recent years.”

Canada’s biggest province by population, Ontario, was the most popular destination for newcomers in the first quarter of this year with 52,720 new permanent residents choosing to settle there during those three months.

That means the central Canadian province was the destination of choice for more than 43.3 per cent of all immigrants to Canada during the first quarter of this year.

New Brunswick Saw The Biggest Drop In Monthly Immigration In March

Economic programs accounted for almost 54.5 per cent of all new permanent residents coming to Ontario during the first quarter. 

They included the: 

Those programs helped 28,710 new permanent residents arrive in Ontario during those three months.

Another 12,960 new permanent residents arrived in Ontario through family sponsorships and 9,525 came to that province through Canada’s refugee and protected persons programs from January through to the end of March.

The other provinces and territories attracted the following number of new permanent residents each during those three months.

  • Newfoundland and Labrador – 1,405
  • Prince Edward Island – 1,330
  • Nova Scotia – 3,995
  • New Brunswick – 3,995
  • Quebec – 13,355
  • Manitoba – 5,680
  • Saskatchewan – 5,610
  • Alberta – 15,360
  • British Columbia – 17,745
  • Yukon – 295
  • Northwest Territories – 115
  • Nunavut – 10

Across the country, New Brunswick was the province that saw the biggest drop in monthly immigration  in March with the number of arrivals of new permanent residents falling by 28.9 per cent. Among the country’s three territories, the Yukon saw a monthly immigration drop of 31.6 per cent in March compared to the previous month.

So far this year, Nunavut has welcomed only 10 new permanent residents.

Canada operates a two-tier immigration system which allows foreign nationals to gain their permanent residency through the federal Express Entry system’s FSW, FST, and CEC programs and as well as the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) of the 10 Canadian provinces.

Temporary immigration to Canada, which skyrocketed during the pandemic, is expected to come under an immigration levels plan in September, Immigration Minister Marc Miller has announced.

The post Immigration to Canada Trending Down, New Data Shows appeared first on Canada Immigration and Visa Information. Canadian Immigration Services and Free Online Evaluation..

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