International adoptions

Many Canadians are choosing to start or expand their family through international adoption. Canadians adopted 2,127 children from abroad in 2009, continuing an upward trend for a third consecutive year.

From 1999 to 2009, international adoptions represented a small proportion (less than 1%) of total immigration into Canada. During this period, annual levels ranged from 1,500 to 2,200 children—a total of nearly 21,000 children.

About 8,000 of these international adoptions were from China. After peaking at 53% of Canadians' international adoptions in 2005, China remains the primary source country. It accounted for close to 22% of Canadians' international adoptions in 2009. Other source countries that year included the United States (12%), Ethiopia (8%), Vietnam (8%) and Haiti (7%).

In 2008, Canada introduced an additional process that grants Canadian citizenship to internationally adopted children at the time of entry into the country.

chart 5.3 International adoptions in Canada
View data source for chart 5.3

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