Foreign Worker Immigration to Canada

Canada has long been a country that welcomes newcomers. The latest immigration statistics confirm how more and more people from all four corners of the globe are making a fresh start in Canada. During the first nine months of 2005, the total number of immigrants increased 10% over the same period in 2004, taking the total to over 206,000. Within that figure, the number of foreign workers entering the country grew by 5% to over 80,000.

More than 25% of these foreign workers made homes for themselves in the western provinces of British Columbia and Alberta. This region has a very high demand for skilled labour as strong economic growth in recent years has caused a significant shortage of specific skills.

Which countries are these workers coming from?
Canada’s largest source of foreign workers was the United States, with Mexico a close second. This partly reflects how NAFTA is allowing workers in North America to move around more freely.

In terms of most significant percentage changes, France saw a year-on-year increase of 13% in the number of workers leaving the country for Canada, followed by Japan at 11% and France at 9%.

The table below provides more details where Canada’s foreign workers come from.

Foreign Worker Flows by Top Ten Source Countries


Country of Last Permanent Residence

2004

 

2005

 

Diff

Total

Q1

Q2

Q3

YTD

Q4

YTD
Rank

Q1

Q2

Q3

YTD

YTD
Rank

YTD 2005 / YTD 2004

United States

16,234

3,399

4,809

4,786

12,994

3,240

1

3,113

4,840

5,029

12,982

1

0%

Mexico

11,476

2,620

5,843

2,861

11,324

152

2

3,047

6,265

3,036

12,348

2

9%

France

6,546

1,493

2,365

1,667

5,525

1,021

4

1,668

2,756

1,827

6,251

3

13%

Jamaica

5,935

974

2,132

2,763

5,869

66

3

1,117

2,263

2,692

6,072

4

3%

Japan

5,446

1,217

2,309

1,522

5,048

398

6

1,644

2,644

1,295

5,583

5

11%

United Kingdom

7,530

1,259

1,877

1,936

5,072

2,458

5

1,344

1,806

1,731

4,881

6

-4%

Philippines

5,713

1,307

1,367

1,706

4,380

1,333

7

1,333

1,557

1,621

4,511

7

3%

Australia

7,211

1,625

1,317

1,147

4,089

3,122

8

1,520

1,467

1,236

4,223

8

3%

India

2,944

705

609

1,002

2,316

628

9

850

773

751

2,374

9

3%

Germany

2,379

465

610

913

1,988

391

10

603

634

916

2,153

10

8%

Total – Top Ten Only

71,414

15,064

23,238

20,303

58,605

12,809

 

16,239

25,005

20,134

61,378

 

5%

Total – Other Countries

21,902

4,133

6,705

7,124

17,962

3,940

4,360

7,371

7,509

19,240

7%

Total

93,316

19,197

29,943

27,427

76,567

16,749

20,599

32,376

27,643

80,618

5%

Source: Citizenship and Immigration Canada Website www.cic.gc.ca