Continued immigration to Canada through the Atlantic region
Atlantic immigration to Canada continues to grow, led by the provinces of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick with provincial nomination programs and the Atlantic Immigration Program.
Atlantic Canada’s immigration program, with an incredible growing trend in 2019, managed to attract nearly 18,000 newly arrived immigrants to this region.
The Atlantic region, which includes the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, has made a relentless effort in recent years to accept as many immigrants as possible.
Atlantic Canada has faced problems such as an aging population, declining birth rates, a high rate of negative migration, and a low rate of interprovincial migration compared to other regions of the country. Therefore, the government, employers, colleges and universities, and immigration service organizations are preparing and developing solutions that can help attract more immigrants, international students, and foreign workers.
In 2010, the Atlantic region welcomed only 8,000 new immigrants to the region. This amount constituted only 3% of the total immigrants to Canada, while this region accounted for 6.5% of the total population of Canada. In other words, the number of immigrants attracted to Atlantic Canada was disproportionately lower than the number attracted by other provinces.
The beginning of transformation in immigration to Canada since 2016
As of 2016, immigration to Canada through the Atlantic region has been in full swing, enabling the region to host nearly 5 percent of new immigrants to Canada that year. This has been largely due to the region’s acceptance of Syrian refugees as well as economic program migrants through the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP).
In 2017, in order to complete the Express Entry program and provincial programs, the federal government launched the migration program through the Atlantic regions as a tool to develop migration to this region.
The Atlantic Regions program has been operational since 2018. The immigration program of the Atlantic regions, together with the provincial programs, was able to attract approximately 14,000 new immigrants to this region. This amount compared to the statistics of 2017, which showed the number of 12,000 people, saw a growth of 22%.
26% growth in immigration to Atlantic regions in 2019
In 2019, the number of immigrants entering the Atlantic region grew by 26 percent. All 4 Atlantic states broke their immigrant admission records.
The province of Newfoundland and Labrador experienced nearly 1,900 immigrants, a 21 percent increase over last year’s 1,500.
Compared to 2018, Prince Edward Island registered a growth of 15% by accepting 2,500 new immigrants.
Nova Scotia, which received 2,100 new immigrants in 2018, managed to host 7,600 immigrants in 2019 with a growth of 27%.
Meanwhile, New Brunswick saw the highest growth in attracting immigrants from 4,600 to 6,000 immigrants.
Atlantic Canada’s ability to achieve a major milestone in 2021
Atlantic Canada is on the right track and approaching a major milestone. To reach its fair share of immigrants to Canada, it needs to attract about 24,000 new immigrants. Assuming new arrivals continue to grow at 20 percent or more per year, as they have been recently, this milestone could be reached by early 2021. Increased allocations to provincial nomination programs in the region in recent years, such as the Atlantic Immigration Program, have played an important role in the success of increasing immigration to Atlantic Canada.
The current federal government has stated in the ruling letter of the Minister of Immigration Marco Mendicino that it will make this program permanent.
Canada’s immigration level plan from 2019 to 2021 aims to double the level of immigrant admissions from 2,000 immigrants in 2019 to 4,000 immigrants in 2021. The targeting of provincial nomination programs has also been set from 61,000 immigrants in 2019 to 67,800 immigrants. This means that the Atlantic immigration program will see an increase in the level just like the provincial nomination programs.
Due to these evidences and predictions about immigration to Canada through the Atlantic, there are very strong reasons to expect that the Atlantic immigration program will receive 6.5% of all immigrants to Canada in the coming years.