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The Daily

Monday, September 29, 2008
Second quarter 2008 (preliminary)

Canada's population posted its highest quarterly growth since 1991 in the second quarter of 2008, with an increase of 125,800. The advance was mainly due to a rise in net international migration which, at 91,600, reached its highest level since the end of the 1980s.

As of July 1, 2008, Canada's population was estimated at 33,311,400. From April to June, Canada's population grew by 0.38%.

The increase in net international migration over the second quarter of 2008 is mainly explained by an increase in both the number of immigrants and non-permanent residents.

Between April and June, 69,200 immigrants entered Canada, nearly 7,600 more than the same quarter a year earlier but below the peak of almost 74,500 observed in the second quarter of 2005.

Immigration was up in all provinces and territories. New second-quarter records were reached in Prince Edward Island, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. Ontario, which traditionally received more than half of Canada's immigrants, fell below the 50% mark for the sixth quarter in a row.

The number of non-permanent residents in Canada also rose by more than 30,800 from April to June, the highest increase ever for a second quarter. Higher net numbers of non-permanent residents were observed in almost every province and territory, especially in Quebec and in the four western provinces, where the levels topped second quarter highs.

Canada's rate of natural increase in the second quarter of 2008 remained relatively stable compared with the same period of 2007, with the number of births and deaths increasing in a similar fashion.

Demographic growth still higher in the West

The rise of net population inflows resulting from international migration from April to June 2008 has affected population dynamics in almost all regions of the country. Every province saw their demographic growth increase compared with the second quarter of 2007.

Note to readers

These population estimates are the first based on 2006 Census counts adjusted for census net undercoverage. Rates of 2006 Census net undercoverage are also released today in The Daily.

Also released today are the 2007/2008 annual demographic estimates and an update of the 1971 to 2007 population estimates series.

Natural increase: Variation in population size over a given period as a result of the difference between the number of births and deaths.

International migration: International migration represents movement of population between Canada and a foreign country which involves a change in the usual place of residence. A distinction is made with regard to immigrants, emigrants, returning emigrants, net temporary emigrants and net non-permanent residents.

Non-permanent residents (also called temporary residents): People from another country who have a work or study permit, or who are refugee claimants, and family members living in Canada with them.

The four provinces west of Ontario as well as Prince Edward Island were the fastest growing provinces during the second quarter of 2008. Alberta's demographic growth, which was the highest in the country at 0.78%, was more than twice the national level.

Alberta led the provinces in rates of natural increase and international migration. Moreover, Alberta saw a resurgence in interprovincial migration from April to June 2008.

Elsewhere in the West, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and British Columbia all posted demographic growth above the national level in the second quarter of 2008. Manitoba posted its highest quarterly increase since the third quarter of 1982.

The Atlantic provinces all recorded population increases in the second quarter of 2008. Prince Edward Island led the way (+0.60%), mainly due to a larger net inflow from international migration.

For a third quarter in a row, Ontario's demographic growth was below the national level. The province continues to record an important net outflow in interprovincial migration, especially to Alberta.

While the number of births and international migration were both on the rise in Quebec from April to June 2008, the province recorded an increased net outflow in interprovincial migration. Like Ontario, Quebec's net outflow was mainly towards Alberta. Nevertheless, Quebec posted its highest growth rate in population since the third quarter of 1992.

In the North, the Northwest Territories was the only territory to post a population decline from April to June 2008. Its net outflow from interprovincial migration was its largest for a second quarter since 1988.

Available on CANSIM: tables 051-0004 to 051-0006, 051-0017 to 051-0020, 051-0037, 051-0045 and 053-0001.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey numbers, including related surveys, 3231, 3233 and 3601.

The publications, Quarterly Demographic Estimates, Vol. 22, no. 2 (91-002-XWE, free) and Annual Demographic Estimates, 2007/2008 (91-215-XWE, free), are now available from the Publications module of our website.

For more information, to obtain additional data, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Client Services (toll-free 1-866-767-5611; 613-951-2320; fax: 613-951-2307;, Demography Division.

Tables. Table(s).