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Canadian Immigration patterns changing focus to Western Canada

More immigrants are deciding to settle out west in provinces like Alberta.

According to this CBC article, immigration patterns in Canada are changing somewhat significantly. Approximately 10 years ago, the majority of immigrants to Canada (about 60 per cent) settled in Ontario, and half of them settling in Toronto. But in 2010, 42 per cent settled in Ontario while immigration to provinces like Alberta and British Columbia skyrocketed.

According to the article, farming and other natural resource sectors are aiding in immigrant employment and creating a better economy out west, while the provincial nominee programs in these provinces allow immigrants to go where the jobs are and start working as soon as they come to Canada.

Higher immigration numbers in these provinces means more business and a bolstered economy as immigrants who desire to own their own homes help stimulate the local real estate markets.

Also according to the article, more than a million people are waiting to come to Canada because of immigration system backlogs.

Here are the stats:

CALENDAR YEAR YEAR TO DATE
2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2010 (Jan-Jun) 2011 (Jan-Jun) % Change
Federal Skilled Workers 208,701 213,745 189,636 148,073 142,067 122,072 23,913 -80%
Quebec Selected Skilled Workers 30,654 33,460 34,612 38,463 37,495 18,021 12,505 -31%
Federal Business Immigrants 12,720 15,096 23,256 32,367 40,675 37,833 3,156 -92%
Quebec Business Immigrants 4,739 6,029 5,987 5,951 9,067 4,907 2,469 -50%
Provincial/ Territorial Nominees 18,695 24,688 38,104 38,533 52,163 29,379 10,233 -65%
Live-in Caregivers 9,030 13,036 18,167 20,652 12,418 6,947 678 -90%
Canadian Experience Class 0 0 1,077 7,320 7,750 4,034 201 -95%
Economic Class 284,539 306,054 310,839 291,359 301,635 223,193 53,155 -76%
Spouses, Partners, Children and Others 69,567 72,431 67,982 64,204 57,835 30,571 25,530 -16%
Parents and Grandparents 18,990 32,606 29,777 16,121 17,202 10,138 3,665 -64%
Family Class 88,557 105,037 97,759 80,325 75,037 40,709 29,195 -28%
Government Assisted Refugees 11,305 11,788 10,735 11,095 8,021 4,392 3,752 -15%
Privately Sponsored Refugees 8,425 9,108 10,820 10,258 11,714 6,379 1,935 -70%
Protected Persons in Canada 11,144 6,751 7,387 11,844 13,284 6,748 2,742 -59%
Dependants Abroad 4,985 5,497 3,124 4,502 4,173 2,217 1,840 -17%
H&C and Public Policy 15,174 13,764 11,976 11,879 10,134 5,815 667 -89%
Permit Holders 114 137 206 160 118 53 11 -79%
Humanitarian Class 51,147 47,045 44,248 49,738 47,444 25,604 10,947 -57%
Other* 22 39 28 20 166 55 25 -55%
Total 424,265 458,175 452,874 421,442 424,282 289,561 93,322 -68%
Source: CIC Operational Databases, 2nd Quarter 2011
* Other includes: deferred removal orders, post-determination refugee claimants, missing and/or invalid data

About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

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