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Canada’s population growth rate falls to WWI levels in 2020

With an increase in deaths and a decrease in new immigrants, Canada saw its lowest population growth rate since 1916.

In 2020, Canada’s population only increased 0.4 per cent, according to Statistics Canada. Population growth has not been this low since the first year of World War I when it was just 0.3 per cent. By the end of 2021, Canada’s population had increased by about 149,000, which just slid its population count past the 38 million mark.

There was an increase in the number of deaths last year, about 5 per cent were due to COVID-19. It was also the first time in Canada’s recorded history that the number of deaths in Canada surpassed 300,000.

Immigration accounted for 58 per cent of population growth in 2020. Usually, it accounts for about 80 per cent of Canada’s growth. Due to travel restrictions and other coronavirus-related measures, the number of new immigrants in 2020 was the lowest it has been since 1998. In 2019, nearly 86 per cent of Canada’s population growth was thanks to newcomers. However, it fell by almost half in 2020.

Canada lost more than 86,000 temporary residents last year, which is the largest net loss on record. This is almost entirely due to decreases in the numbers of work and study permit holders.

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