Annual Demographic Estimates: Subprovincial Areas
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- Section 1: Census metropolitan areas
- Section 2: Economic regions and regional portraits
- Section 3: Census divisions
- Section 4: Maps
- Quality of demographic data
- Appendix A: Glossary
- Appendix B: Explanatory notes for the tables
- Appendix C: Sources and remarks
- More information
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Section 2: Economic regions and regional portraits
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- Regional portrait: Atlantic provinces
- Regional portrait: Quebec
- Regional portrait: Ontario
- Regional portrait: Prairies
- Regional portrait: British Columbia
- Regional portrait: Territories
- Summary table
Halifax economic region posts largest population increase in the Atlantic provincesNote 1
Of the Atlantic provinces’ economic regions (ER), the Halifax (N.S.) ER posted the largest annual population growth (10.7 per thousand) between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014. The next strongest growth rates belonged to the ERs of Fredericton–Oromocto (N.B.) and the Avalon Peninsula (N.L.) with annual population increases of 7.1 per thousand and 5.6 per thousand, respectively. Of these three ERs with the largest increases, the Halifax and Avalon Peninsula ERs were the two most populous in the Atlantic provinces. On July 1, 2014, 414,400 people resided in the Halifax (N.S) ER, 275,600 in the Avalon Peninsula (N.L.) ER, and 139,700 in the Fredericton–Oromocto (N.B.) ER.
In addition to these three ERs, which had growth rates below the national average, two other ERs out of the 15 in Atlantic Canada saw population increases, namely the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) ER and the Moncton–Richibucto (N.B.) ER, each with an annual growth rate of 5.3 per thousand.
Two-thirds of the ERs in the Atlantic provinces saw their populations decline
The largest population decrease in the Atlantic provinces occurred in the South Coast–Burin Peninsula (N.L.) ER, which saw its population decline by approximately 600 persons (-16.0 per thousand). The other ERs that had the largest decreases include Cape Breton (N.S.) and Edmundston–Woodstock (N.B.), with annual growth rates of -13.3 per thousand and -12.8 per thousand respectively.
For the rest of this analysis, a rate higher than -1 per thousand and lower than 1 per thousand is considered to be nil or low. Rates are based on the ratio of the number of events during the period (t, t+x) to the average of the populations at the beginning and end of the period. Five-year rates are annualized. Preliminary postcensal estimates are subject to revision. Future updates could affect trend analysis.
In Canada, the six ERs that saw population decreases lower than -10.0 per thousand—the biggest in the country—were all located in the Atlantic provinces.
The population growth rate for the most recent period (2013/2014) was lower than the average annual rate for the last five-year period (2009/2014) in all Atlantic ERs except Halifax.
Population increases from international migration often insufficient to offset losses from internal migration
In the Atlantic ERs experiencing population growth, international migration, and to a lesser extent, intraprovincial migration were the main drivers of growth. The decline in population that occurred in some ERS in the past year was primarily due to net losses in internal migration exchanges. Moreover, the aging population in these ERs means that the number of births was not enough to offset the number of deaths, often resulting in negative natural increases.
The Halifax (N.S.) ER experienced the strongest natural increase in the Atlantic provinces with a rate of 2.5 per thousand. This rate was lower than the rate for Canada (3.7 per thousand) and higher than that for the Atlantic provinces (-0.3 per thousand). In contrast, several ERs registered negative natural increases, indicating that there were more estimated deaths than births. In this regard, the Cape Breton (N.S.) ER posted the lowest natural increase (-4.5 per thousand) of any ER in Canada since the early 2000s, followed closely by the Notre Dame–Central Bonavista Bay (N.L.) ER with a rate of -4.4 per thousand.
In the Atlantic provinces, the ER with the highest population growth resulting from international migration was the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) ER with 11.1 per thousand, exceeding even the national average (7.3 per thousand). In the majority of the Atlantic ERs (8 of 15), international migration remains a marginal growth factor with slight increases of 0 to 1 per thousand.
In 14 of the 15 Atlantic ERs, net interprovincial migration was negative. Halifax (N.S.) was the only Atlantic ER not to post negative interprovincial migration. St. John–St. Stephen (N.B.) was the ER that saw the largest decline on account of interprovincial migration with a rate of -9.6 per thousand, representing a net loss of 1,600 people.
In both Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador, the gains from intraprovincial migration were concentrated in a single ER. These ERs were Halifax (N.S.) and the Avalon Peninsula (N.L.), which had respective increases of 1,400 and 1,000 persons. In New Brunswick, two ERs posted positive net intraprovincial migration: Moncton–Richibucto (+700 people) and Fredericton–Oromocto (+600 people).
Older age structure of the population in all ERs in the Atlantic provinces than in the rest of Canada
On July 1, 2014, there were no Atlantic ERs with a proportion of 0-to-14-year-olds above the national average (16.1%). Furthermore, the proportion of persons aged 65 and over was higher in all of the Atlantic ERs than in Canada (15.7%), with the exception of the Halifax (14.2%) and the Avalon Peninsula (15.5%) ERs.
Of all ERs in Canada, the Southern (N.S.) ER had the largest proportion of persons aged 65 years and over (23.7%) on July 1, 2014. A year ago, the Muskoka–Kawarthas (Ont.) ER ranked first in this category. In the Atlantic provinces, the Halifax (N.S.) ER was home to the smallest proportion of this age group (14.2%).
For the purposes of this article, various indicators will be used to measure the aging of a population. The distribution of the population aged 0 to 14 years and 65 years and over and the median age will be the indicators considered. The median age is an age “x” that divides the population into two equal groups, such that one contains only those individuals older than “x” and the other those younger than “x.”
The 0-14 age group accounted for 15.9% of the population of the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) ER, the highest proportion in the Atlantic provinces. Conversely, the lowest proportion of individuals aged 0-14 years was recorded in the Campbellton–Miramichi (N.B.) ER (12.4%). On July 1, 2014, the number of persons aged 65 years and over was higher than the number aged 0-14 years in all Atlantic ERs except Halifax, where the numbers in these two groups were the same. The relatively old age structure of several ERs in the Atlantic provinces can be attributed to a lower birth rate than in the rest of Canada. Furthermore, persistent negative net internal migration, especially among persons aged 20 to 29 years, contributes to aging of the population in most of the Atlantic ERs.
Figure 2.1 compares the ERs in the Atlantic provinces with the youngest population (Prince Edward Island, P.E.I.) and the oldest population (Southern, N.S.). The older age structure of the Southern (N.S.) ER is easily discernible from the top of the age pyramid, which is wider for this ER (N.S.) than for the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) ER. Also, the structure of the working-age population is younger in the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) ER than in the Southern (N.S.) ER. There is a greater imbalance between people between 15 and 39 years and between 40 and 64 in the Southern (N.S.) ER. Lastly, the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) ER has a higher proportion of young people aged 14 and under than the Southern (N.S.) ER.
South Coast–Burin Peninsula is the ER where the median age increased the most during the last 10 years in the Atlantic provinces
Between July 1, 2004 and July 1, 2014, the change in median age in each of the 15 ERs was above the national average (+2.0 years). This reflects faster aging of all ERs in the Atlantic provinces compared with the rest of Canada. Nevertheless, on July 1, 2014, the median age of the Halifax ER (39.7 years) remained below that of Canada (40.4 years).
Population aging was faster in the ER of South Coast–Burin Peninsula (N.L.) than in all the other Atlantic provinces and in Canada. Its median age rose from 41.8 to 49.4 between 2004 and 2014, representing an increase of 7.6 years. The Halifax (N.S.) ER posted the most modest increase in median age in the Atlantic provinces, up 2.2 years over the past 10 years, which came close to the national level.
ERs in the Greater Montréal area posted the strongest population increases in Quebec
Between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, the strongest population increases occurred in the ERs of Montréal (11.9 per thousand), Laurentides (10.2 per thousand), Laval (9.2 per thousand) and Lanaudière (8.5 per thousand). Other than the Montréal ER, which covers the Island of Montréal and had a population of 1,988,200 on July 1, 2014 (24.2% of Quebec’s population), no other Quebec ER experienced growth above the Canadian rate (10.9 per thousand). The populations of the other ERs are as follows: Laurentides (586,100), Laval (420,900) and Lanaudière (492,200).
Eastern Quebec ERs saw their populations shrink during the last year
In 2013/2014, the Quebec ERs that reported decreases in their populations were all located in Eastern Quebec. Provincially, the population with the strongest decline was that of the Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine ER, whose total population was 92,500 on July 1, 2014, down 800 (-8.3 per thousand) than in the previous year. The two other ERs that experienced shrinking populations, namely Côte-Nord and Bas-Saint-Laurent, lost 700 and 400 individuals respectively. Their population growth rates during the 2013/2014 period were -7.2 per thousand (Côte-Nord) and -2.0 per thousand (Bas-Saint-Laurent). The population growth of the Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean (0.0 per thousand) and Abitibi-Témiscamingue (0.9 per thousand) ERs were nil or low.
Drivers of population growth in Quebec vary from one ER to another
The main drivers of growth varied among the five Quebec ERs that recorded the strongest population increases. In the ERs of Laval and Montréal, population growth was essentially fed by international migration, while the increases in the populations of the Laurentides and Lanaudière ERs were mainly attributable to intraprovincial migration. The population decreases posted by the three Eastern Quebec ERs were primarily due to negative net intraprovincial migration.
The Nord-du-Québec ER stood out sharply from the 16 other Quebec ERs because of its natural increase. A significantly higher number of births than deaths enabled this ER to post the strongest natural increase rate (13.1 per thousand) in Quebec and the highest rate in Eastern and Central Canada. Elsewhere in Quebec, the number of births exceeded that of deaths in most other ERs, except Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine and Mauricie. These two ERs registered natural increase rates of -2.8 per thousand and -1.0 per thousand respectively.
The Montréal ER differed from other Quebec ERs because of the importance of international migration as the main factor in population growth. With an international migration growth rate of 16.3 per thousand, Montréal had the second highest rate in Canada for an ER, second to that of Winnipeg (Man.), with a rate of 18.4 per thousand. Net international migration for the Montréal ER was +32,200 in 2013/2014, representing 69% of this growth provincially. In Quebec, the second highest increase from international migration was registered in the Laval ER (6.3 per thousand, for net international migration of 2,700).
The majority of the ERs in Quebec recorded negative or no net interprovincial migration. However, the impact of this factor remained generally marginal, with more than half (10 of 17) of Quebec ERs posting low or neutral interprovincial migration rates, and interprovincial migration not being a main factor in growth or declines in the other ERs. In Quebec, the Montréal ER posted the lowest net interprovincial migration (-3.5 per thousand, for a net balance of -7,000 persons).
The Laurentides ER experienced the strongest growth due to intraprovincial migration in Quebec (+4,400 for a rate of 7.6 per thousand) during the last period. These gains in intraprovincial exchanges occurred mainly at the expense of the Montréal and Laval ERs. Conversely, the Montréal ER recorded the largest population decline due to intraprovincial migration in Quebec, losing 14,700 people for a rate of -7.4 per thousand.
Most Quebec ERs were among the oldest in Canada… with some exceptions
In Quebec, the age structure of the population of most ERs was older compared with the country as a whole. The Nord-du-Québec and Outaouais ERs had indicators showing the relative youthfulness of their populations compared with the national average, with the proportion of persons aged 65 and older below the national average and the proportion of persons aged 0 to 14 years – above. Moreover, the proportion of persons under 15 years of age was almost twice as high in the Nord-du-Québec ER than in the entire province (27.1% and 15.4% respectively). Lanaudière, Laval, Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Montérégie were other ERs where the proportion of the population aged 14 years and under was relatively higher compared with Canada.
The Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine ER stood out for having the highest proportion of persons aged 65 and over (23.2%) in Quebec on July 1, 2014. This ER also had the lowest proportion of persons aged 0 to 14 (12.0%). In contrast, the Nord-du-Québec ER was noteworthy with a low proportion of seniors (7.0% of the population is 65 years and older).
Figure 2.2 draws a parallel between the age pyramids of the two Quebec ERs with the oldest population (Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine) and the youngest population (Nord-du-Québec). The wide base of the age pyramid for the Nord-du-Québec ER reflects a young population. The 0-4 age group carries the most weight in this ER, in strong contrast to the situation in the Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine ER where people in their fifties and sixties represented the largest proportion of the population. The older age structure of the Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine ER is attributable mainly to continued negative natural increase and to the especially large migration losses among the 18-to-24 age group. The Nord-du-Québec ER still has a relatively young age structure because of higher birth and death rates.
Fast population aging in Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine drives median age up to 50 years
Besides having the highest proportion of persons aged 65 years and over in Quebec, Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine is also the ER where population aging was the most rapid. Between July 1, 2004 and July 1, 2014, the median age rose from 44.1 years to 50.8 years, an increase of 6.7 years. This is the only ER in Canada for which the median age was above the 50-year mark on July 1, 2014.
Only four ERs in Quebec had smaller increases in median age than in Canada as a whole. They are the Capitale-Nationale, Laval, Nord-du-Québec and Montréal ERs. The Montréal ER posted the lowest increase in median age in Quebec (+0.4 years between 2004 and 2014).
Ontario ERs with the highest increases included large urban centres
Among all of Ontario’s economic regions, the Toronto ER registered the highest population increase (14.1 per thousand) and was the only ER above the national average (10.9 per thousand) for the period from July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014. It was followed by the ERs of Kitchener–Waterloo–Barrie (9.9 per thousand) and Ottawa (8.5 per thousand).
With an increase of 88,900 persons during the last year, the Toronto ER was home to 6,357,700 people on July 1, 2014, accounting for just under half of Ontario’s population (46%). The Ottawa ER had 1,320,300 inhabitants, while the Kitchener–Waterloo–Barrie ER had 1,297,900, an increase of 12,800 from July 1, 2013.
The population of the two Northern Ontario ERs and of Windsor–Sarnia decreased over the last period
The biggest population decrease among Ontario ERs was in the Northeast ER, which posted a loss of about 1,700 inhabitants (-3.0 per thousand) between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014. Northwest and Windsor–Sarnia are the two other ERs in Ontario that have witnessed a significant decrease in population, with negative annual growth rates of -1.5 per thousand (-800 inhabitants) and -1.3 per thousand (-400 inhabitants) respectively.
Over the last five years, the pace of population growth has slowed in most of Ontario’s ERs (8 out of 11). However, it has remained stable in the Hamilton–Niagara Peninsula ER and has risen slightly in the ERs of Muskoka–Kawarthas and Stratford–Bruce Peninsula.
Migration was the determining factor in the growth of most Ontario ERs
In Ontario, among the ERs that registered population growth between 2013 and 2014, international and intraprovincial migration were the main drivers of this growth. The ERs of Toronto, London and Ottawa owed the largest portion of their population growth to international migration. In the other ERs in Ontario where the population increased during the last period, intraprovincial migration exchanges fed the majority of the growth. As for the three ERs that posted population decreases in the past year, they were due mainly to net losses in interprovincial migration.
In this province, the Toronto ER recorded the highest level of natural increase at 5.5 per thousand, corresponding to an increase of 34,900 people (69,300 births and 34,300 deaths). In contrast, the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER posted the lowest level of natural increase in Ontario at -2.5 per thousand.
The Toronto ER was also notable in terms of international migration. As Toronto’s main growth driver, international migration in this ER (12.7 per thousand) was the highest of all Ontario’s ERs. Net international migration totalled 80,000, representing 83 % of the province’s growth due to international migration. Conversely, international migration was a negligible source of growth in five of Ontario’s 11 ERs (Kingston–Pembroke, Muskoka–Kawarthas, Stratford–Bruce Peninsula, Northeast and Northwest), with rates between 0.2 and 0.6 per thousand.
Between July 1, 2013 and July 1, 2014, net interprovincial migration values were negative in 8 of 11 Ontario ERs. In the other three ERs (Toronto, Ottawa and Kingston–Pembroke), the interprovincial migration growth rate was considered to be nil or low. The most significant negative growth due to this factor occurred in the Windsor–Sarnia ER (-2.9 per thousand) and resulted in a loss of almost 1,900 people.
Migratory exchanges within the province contributed significantly to the growth of the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER and the Kitchener–Waterloo–Barrie ER, which posted the highest intraprovincial migration rates in Ontario at 8.0 per thousand and 5.8 per thousand respectively. In contrast, the Toronto ER showed the highest intraprovincial migration loss for Ontario (-3.3 per thousand), a net drop of 21,000 persons.
Younger age structures for the Toronto and Kitchener–Waterloo–Barrie ERs than for Canada
Although on July 1, 2014, the age structure in Ontario was very similar to the national average, not all ERs had the same profile. The Toronto and Kitchener–Waterloo–Barrie ERs were the only ones where the proportion of persons aged 0 to 14 years was higher than for Canada and the proportion of persons aged 65 years and over was lower. Moreover, they were two of only three ERs in Ontario with a median age lower than that for Canada (40.4 years), at 38.8 years for Toronto and 39.9 years for Kitchener-Waterloo-Barrie (London was the third ER and had a median age of 40.1 years).
On July 1, 2014, the Toronto ER had the smallest proportion of persons aged 65 years and over in Ontario (13.7%). In contrast, the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER had the highest proportion of persons in this age group (23.4%). This ER also had the lowest relative importance of persons aged 0 to 14 years (13.0%) of all the Ontario ERs. Finally, the highest proportion of persons aged less than 15 years old was found in the Northwest ER (16.9%).
Figure 2.3 compares the ER with the youngest population (Northwest) and the ER with the oldest population (Muskoka–Kawarthas) in Ontario on July 1, 2014. Although the differences in the age pyramids of these two ERs are not significant, persons aged 65 years and over account for a larger part of the population in the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER than in the Northwest ER. In fact, the top of the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER’s pyramid is wider, especially from 60 years and over. Also, the size of the working-age population is proportionally larger in the Northwest ER, as is the size of the youth population, as shown by the narrower base of the pyramid for the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER. In this same ER, the aging of the population is fuelled by internal migration losses among persons aged 18 to 24 years, combined with gains in persons aged 45 years.
Population aging faster in Ontario’s ERs than in the rest of the country
Over the last decade (2004/2014), the highest increase in median age occurred in the Muskoka–Kawarthas ER (+6.0 years). While the median age for this population was 43.0 years on July 1, 2004, it rose to 48.9 years on July 1, 2014, the highest in Ontario. The pace of aging of the population was at least twice as fast as the national average (+2.0 years) in three other Ontario ERs: Windsor–Sarnia (+4.6 years), Stratford–Bruce Peninsula (+4.5 years) and Northeast (+4.0 years).
The Toronto, Ottawa, London and Hamilton–Niagara Peninsula ERs experienced the slowest aging rate in Ontario. The increases in media age were 2.3 years for Toronto, 2.5 years for Ottawa, 2.6 years for London and 2.9 years for Hamilton–Niagara Peninsula. These increases, although modest at the provincial level, remain slightly higher than the increases observed for Canada as a whole.
Alberta ERs post the strongest population increases in the country
In the Prairie provinces,Note 2 between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, the strongest population increase occurred in the Calgary (Alta.) ER (34.3 per thousand). This was also the strongest annual population growth rate of all 76 Canadian ERs. During the same period, the second and third largest population increases in the Prairie provinces occurred in the ERs of Edmonton (Alta.) (31.3 per thousand) and Wood Buffalo–Cold Lake (Alta.) (28.7 per thousand).
The ERs in the Prairies differed greatly from those in the rest of Canada because of the vitality of their population growth. Eight of Canada’s 10 fastest-growing ERs in the past year were located in the Prairie provinces. Of these, four were in Alberta and two were in each Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
Only one Prairie ER saw its population decline
Although most of the strongest growing Canadian ERs are located in the Prairies, population growth varied widely from one ER to another. For example, the Parklands (Man.) ER recorded a decrease of almost 400 inhabitants (-8.0 per thousand).
The pace of recent population growth (2013/2014 period) for the eight Alberta ERs was more rapid than the previous five-year period’s annual average. Nevertheless, population growth in all of Alberta’s ERs slowed slightly in 2013/2014 compared with the previous annual period (2012/2013).
International and interprovincial migration crucial to the growth of the Prairie ERs
In the Prairie provinces, the ERs with the strongest growth benefit largely from international and interprovincial migration to increase their populations. The ERs that post the weakest growth stand out because of negative net internal migration.
In 16 of the 22 Prairie ERs, the rate of natural increase was above the national average (3.7 per thousand). With 1,000 births and 200 deaths, the Northern (Sask.) ER had the highest rate of natural increase (18.7 per thousand) in the Prairies. In contrast, Yorkton–Melville (Sask.) is the only Prairie ER where the rate of natural increase (-1.9 per thousand) led to a decrease in the population.
Of all the Prairie ERs, international migration had the greatest impact on the growth rate of the Winnipeg (Man.) ER (18.4 per thousand). Other than Winnipeg, the rate of net international migration exceeded 10 per thousand in five other Prairie ERs, where this factor was also the main driver of population growth. International migration growth rates reached 15.8 per thousand in Saskatoon–Biggar (Sask.), 15.2 per thousand in Regina–Moose Mountain (Sask.), 13.7 per thousand in Calgary (Alta), 12.9 per thousand in South Central (Man.), and 11.2 per thousand in Edmonton (Alta). These rates of international migration are among the highest across Canada, all ranking in the top 10.
Interprovincial migration played a leading role in the growth of a number of Prairie ERs, especially in Alberta. During the 2013/2014 period, the Wood Buffalo–Cold Lake (Alta) ER had the highest rate of net interprovincial migration (22.5 per thousand) in the Prairies and in Canada. Since the early 2000s, this ER has had the highest growth rates from interprovincial migration. The impact of interprovincial migration is quite different in Manitoba, where none of the ERs recorded increases that can be attributed to interprovincial migration exchanges.
Although the population of the Wood Buffalo–Cold Lake (Alta) ER is growing rapidly (28.7 per thousand), its rate of intraprovincial migration (-15.8 per thousand) was the lowest in the Prairies and in Canada as a whole. Conversely, the ERs of Interlake (Man.) and Southeast (Man.) posted the highest levels of intraprovincial migration in the Prairies and in Canada, with rates of 9.3 per thousand and 9.1 per thousand respectively. These gains from intraprovincial exchanges occurred mainly at the expense of the Winnipeg ER.
Young people account for a significant proportion of the population in all Prairie ERs
On July 1, 2014, the Prairie ERs had a relatively younger age structure than the rest of Canada. First, the proportion of young persons aged 0 to 14 years was above the national average in all 22 Prairie ERs. In addition, the proportion of persons aged 65 years and over was below the Canadian average in the majority of the ERs (17 of 22). Finally, only four ERs in that part of Canada had more persons aged 65 years and over than persons aged 0 to 14 years (Interlake, Man.; Parklands, Man.; Swift Current–Moose Jaw, Sask.; and Yorkton–Melville, Sask.).
In the Prairies, the Northern (Sask.) ER stood out on account of its large proportion of 0-to-14-year-olds (31.4%), the highest proportion for an ER in Canada’s 10 provinces. It also had the lowest proportion of persons aged 65 years and over (6.0%). Although still higher than the Canadian average, the smallest proportion of young people aged 0 to 14 years was in the Winnipeg (Man.) ER at 16.4%.
The age structures of the Alberta ERs of Wood Buffalo–Cold Lake and Calgary were notable for their relatively smaller proportions of the 65-and-over age group, and also for the sizable portion of their working-age population (15 to 64 years). With 73.3% of the population between the ages of 15 and 64 in the Wood Buffalo–Cold Lake ER and 71.8% in the Calgary ER, these proportions were the highest in the Prairies (69.0%) and among the highest in Canada (68.2%).
Figure 2.4 compares the Prairie ERs with the youngest population (Northern, Sask.) and the oldest population (Parklands, Man.). The very wide base of the pyramid for the Northern (Sask.) ER shows the large number of young people within its population. Conversely, the pyramid for the Parklands (Man.) ER shows the predominance of older age groups compared with other age groups, especially those 50 years and over. This ER also stands out for the relatively low proportion of individuals aged 20 to 40.
The ER populations in the Prairies are aging at a slower pace than in the rest of Canada
Between July 1, 2004 and July 1, 2014, the increase in the median age of the population was lower in 86% of the Prairie ERs (19 in 22) than in all of Canada (+2.0 years). Moreover, four Prairie ERs posted a slight decline in median age during this 10-year period, with the Southwest (Man.) ER posting the largest decrease (-1.0 years).
Between 2004 and 2014, the Interlake (Man.) ER saw the largest increase in median age (+3.5 years) in the Prairies. With regard to population aging, the ERs of Manitoba and Saskatchewan are not homogeneous. The Prairies had the three ERs with the largest 10-year increases in median age (Interlake (Man.), +3.5 years; Parklands (Man.), +2.7 years; Northern (Sask.), +2.2 years) as well as the four ERs with the largest decreases in median age (Southwest (Man.), -1.0 years; South Central (Man.), -0.7 years; Regina–Moose Mountain (Sask.), -0.6 years; Saskatoon–Biggar (Sask.), -0.2 years).
The Northeast ER registers the highest population growth in British Columbia
In British Columbia, the Northeast ER posted the highest population growth rate (25.5 per thousand) between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014. The next strongest growth rates belonged to the ERs of Thompson-Okanagan and Lower Mainland-Southwest, with annual population increases of 13.5 per thousand and 12.2 per thousand respectively. These three ERs were the only ones in British Columbia that registered stronger population growth rates than Canada as whole (10.9 per thousand).
Compared to the population growth rates of the past five years, last year showed an increase in growth for most ERs in British Columbia. In fact, during the 2013/2014 period, population growth rates in each ER exceeded those of the 2009/2014 period, except for the Lower Mainland-Southwest ER.
A population decrease occurred in the ER of Cariboo
During the 2013/2014 period, Cariboo was the only ER in British Columbia to record a population decrease, with a slight drop of 300 persons (-2.1 per thousand).
Drivers of population growth vary from one ER to another in British Columbia
In British Columbia, the growth factors are fairly diversified depending on the ER. For example, a high rate of natural increase was largely responsible for the population growth in the three northernmost ERs (Nechako, North Coast and Northeast). On the other hand, in the ER of Lower Mainland-Southwest, international migration was the main engine of population growth. Finally, the ERs of Kootenay and Vancouver Island and Coast can attribute a large portion of their population increase to interprovincial migration, while intraprovincial migration was the main driver of the population growth in the Thompson-Okanagan ER.
The Northeast ER registered the strongest rate of natural increase in this province, reaching 9.0 per thousand. Conversely, natural increase was negative in the ERs of Vancouver Island and Coast (-1.1 per thousand) and Thompson-Okanagan (-1.0 per thousand).
In British Columbia, the international migration rate was at its highest in the ER of Lower Mainland-Southwest (11.8 per thousand). For the remaining seven ERs, the international migration growth rate registered under the Canadian average (7.3 per thousand), varying from 0.1 per thousand (Kootenay) to 1.8 per thousand (Northeast).
Between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, net interprovincial migration was more often positive than negative in British Columbia ERs (5 out of 8). The net interprovincial migration rate was at its highest in the ER of Vancouver Island and Coast (3.1 per thousand) and lowest in the Northeast ER (-5.5 per thousand).
Net intraprovincial migration was negative in most British Columbia ERs. The lowest net intraprovincial migration rates were recorded in the ERs of Nechako (-10.7 per thousand) and North Coast (-5.3 per thousand). Conversely, the ER of Thompson-Okanagan experienced the strongest intraprovincial migration level in this province, reaching 3.5 per thousand and generating an increase of approximately 1,900 persons.
ERs in the Northern part of British Columbia are younger than those in the Southern part
The ERs in the Northern part of the province stood out sharply from those in the South due to the age distribution of the population. On July 1, 2014, the four ERs in Northern British Columbia (Cariboo, North Coast, Nechako and Northeast) were the only ones where the proportion of persons aged 0-14 years was higher than the Canadian average and where the proportion of persons aged 65 years and over was lower than the Canadian average. The four ERs located in Southern British Columbia were generally older, with more persons aged 65 years and over than persons aged 0 to 14 years, except for the ER of Lower Mainland-Southwest, where they accounted for roughly the same numbers.
In British Columbia, the Thompson-Okanagan ER hosted the largest proportion of population aged 65 years and over (22.0%). By contrast, the proportion of the 65 years and over age group accounted for only 9.5% of the population in the Northeast ER, which is home to a large proportion of persons aged 0 to 14 years (20.4%). In British Columbia, the lowest proportion of individuals aged 0-14 years was recorded in the Vancouver Island and Coast ER (13.3%).
Figure 2.5 compares the ER with the oldest population (Thompson-Okanagan) to the ER with the youngest population (Northeast), in British Columbia. In the Northeast ER, persons aged 25 to 29 years accounted for the largest five-year age group, compared to persons aged 55 to 59 years accounting for the largest group in the ER of Thompson-Okanagan. The older age structure of the Thompson-Okanagan ER is demonstrated by the thickness of the top of its age pyramid, which is wider than that of the Northeast ER. This older age structure is due, among other things, to a negative net internal migration for persons aged 18 to 24 years and a highly positive net internal migration for persons aged 45 to 64 years in the ER of Thompson-Okanagan.
Northeast ER experienced a slower population aging than Canada during the last 10 years
Between July 1, 2004 and July 1, 2014, the median age increased by 0.9 years in the Northeast ER to reach 34.1 years, the lowest value in the province. In all other British Columbia ERs, median age increases over the past 10 years exceeded that of Canada as a whole (+2.0 years). Population aging was most rapid in Nechako, registering the largest increase in median age (+4.6 years) in British Columbia.
Because all three territories are made up of a single economic region, the regional portrait of territories will consider census divisions (CDs) in this analysis.
Steady population growth for the three CDs in Nunavut
Within the three Canadian territories, the highest population growths were observed in the three CDs of Nunavut for the 2013/2014 period. The Baffin CD (Nvt.) registered the strongest population growth (35.4 per thousand) of all 10 Canadian territories’ CDs. The next strongest population growth rates belonged to Keewatin (Nvt.) (31.8 per thousand) and Kitikmeot (Nvt.) (22.2 per thousand).
Most CDs from the Northwest Territories have experienced population losses
Within the territories, five CDs registered significant decreases in their population; all of them were part of the Northwest Territories. The largest population decreases occurred in the CDs of Region 3 (N.W.T.) and Region 4 (N.W.T.), both experiencing a population growth rate of -7.7 per thousand. Region 1 (N.W.T.), Region 5 (N.W.T.) and Region 6 (N.W.T.) were the three other CDs in the Canadian territories to register population losses, with population growths rates of -7.6 per thousand, -6.7 per thousand and -3.5 per thousand respectively.
A larger number of births than deaths mainly explains why the population grows in territories’ CDs
Between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, natural increase has been the main driver of growth in each of the 10 territories’ CDs. If some CDs in the territories experienced population decreases during this period, it was mainly due to negative net interprovincial migration, except for Region 3 (N.W.T.), where intraprovincial migration was the main factor of population decrease.
The number of births largely surpasses the number of deaths in all Nunavut, Northwest Territories and Yukon CDs. In fact, the natural increase rate for each of the CDs in the territories is higher than the Canadian average (3.7 per thousand). The Keetawin CD (Nvt.) registered the highest natural increase in Canada (25.2 per thousand). The lowest rate of natural increase within the territories occurred in Yukon (6.2 per thousand), a rate almost twice as high as the national average.
All CDs in Nunavut posted positive net interprovincial migration levels. The Baffin CD (Nvt.) registered the highest net interprovincial migration rate in the territories (15.2 per thousand). Conversely, all CDs from the Northwest Territories experienced population losses attributable to interprovincial migration. Region 6 (N.W.T.) recorded the lowest net interprovincial migration rate (-26.2 per thousand) in the territories.
A substantially younger age structure in territories’ CDs
On July 1, 2014, the proportion of persons aged 65 years and over did not surpass 10% in 8 of the 10 territories’ CDs, all of them having lower proportions of this older age group compared to the national average of 15.7%. Moreover, the number of young persons less than 15 years of age exceeded twice that of persons aged 65 years and over in territories CDs, with the exception of the Yukon and Region 5 (N.W.T.) CDs, where there was still more young persons than seniors.
More than one third of Keetawin’s (Nvt.) population was under 15 years of age as of July 1, 2014, the largest proportion (34.0%) of all Canada CDs. Moreover, this CD also had the second lowest proportion of persons aged 65 years and over (3.4%) in Canada. In other words, in Keetawin CD (Nvt.), the number of persons aged 0 to 14 years was ten times larger than the number of persons aged 65 years and over. The 0-14 age group accounted for more than 30% of the population in one other CD, namely Kitikmeot (Nvt.) with a proportion of 31.1%.
Figure 2.6 compares the CD with the youngest population (Keetawin, Nvt.) to the CD with the oldest population (Yukon, Y.T.) in the territories. The proportion of children in Keetawin CD (Nvt.) is considerably larger than in the CD of Yukon (Y.T.), as demonstrated by the thickness of the base of Keetawin’s (Nvt.) population pyramid. Among other things, this can be explained by Keewatin’s higher levels of fertility and mortality. In the Yukon (Y.T.) CD, the top of the pyramid, larger than that of Keewatin’s pyramid, demonstrates a markedly older age structure. Moreover, the working-age population (15 to 64 years of age) is mainly constituted of persons aged 40 to 64 years in the Yukon (Y.T.) CD, whereas persons aged 15 to 39 years were accounting for the largest part in Keewatin CD.
The population living in territories’ CDs is aging at a similar rate than in Canada
Although the median age of the population in territories’ CD is considerably lower than in the rest of Canada, population aging is taking place at a similar pace to that of the whole country.
Also, the Northwest Territories was home to the two fastest aging CDs among the three territories. With a median age rising from 31.4 years on July 1, 2004 to 35.6 years on July 1, 2014, the CD of Region 5 (N.W.T.) recorded the largest increase (+4.3 years) in the territories.
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