Issue 16-116: Quarterly Population Highlightsclone-16928 - clone-16939

June 17, 2016

B.C. Highlights

The population of B.C. was estimated at 4,720,932 as of April 1, 2016, growing by 13,911 persons in the first quarter of 2016 (up 0.3% from January 1, 2016).

Combined net in-migration from all sources (inter- provincial and international) totalled 12,493 persons during the first quarter of 2016. Broken down, net interprovincial in-migration contributed 5,067 persons to population growth while net international in- migration added 7,426 persons. Finally, a natural increase (births minus deaths) of 1,418 had a positive impact on population growth in the first quarter.

The Last Twelve Months

B.C.’s total population grew by 48,458 persons (+1.04%) over the twelve months ending March 31, 2016, largely due to international and interprovincial migration. On an annual basis, births (+44,377) and immigrants (+40,693) were the largest sources of population growth for the province. Interprovincial migration accounted for a net gain of 19,118 persons from April 1, 2015 to March 31, 2016. Consequently, more than four in every five persons added since April 1, 2015 could be attributed to net migration from all sources (+39,385). The remainder was due to natural increase (+9,073).

National Overview

The population of Canada grew by 106,966 persons (+0.30%) to 36,155,487 during the first quarter of 2016. Leading the growth at the provincial and territorial level were Alberta (+0.42%), Manitoba (+0.38%), Nunavut (+0.38%), Saskatchewan (+0.36%) and Ontario (+0.34%). Prince Edward Island (+0.31%), British Columbia (+0.30%) and Yukon (+0.27%) also saw population increases. The remaining jurisdictions also experienced small increases in the first quarter.

First Quarter International Migration

Net international in-migration to British Columbia (immigrants plus the net change in NPRs plus returning emigrants less emigrants and persons temporarily abroad) registered a net gain of 7,426 in the first quarter. This is a noticeable increase when compared to the net gain of 1,835 reported for the first quarter of 2015. This is driven by the increase in the total number of immigrants arriving in British Columbia from January 1 to March 31 (+11,750), almost double the number registered during the same three months in 2015 (+6,772). As for persons leaving B.C. for international destinations, an estimated 3,359 left on a permanent basis and 1,376 were away temporarily in the first quarter of 2016, unchanged from the same period in 2015.

First Quarter Interprovincial Migration

Of the four provinces and territories that reported a net gain in population from other Canadian jurisdictions in the first quarter of 2016, British Columbia showed by far the highest net gain. In B.C. an inflow of 15,430 persons was offset by an outflow of 10,363 for a net population gain of 5,067. British Columbia’s net exchange with Alberta was positive, with an estimated 2,628 more persons leaving Alberta for B.C. than those going to Alberta from British Columbia. In addition, B.C. reported positive net in-migration from Ontario (+1,130) as well as positive gains from most other jurisdictions. Ontario was the second highest net recipient in the first quarter of 2016 with a net gain of 1,101 interprovincial migrants.

Did you know?

Canada will see a dramatic boost in the number of refugees it plans to resettle this year to 55,800, up from a target of 24,800 in 2015. The majority of new refugees will be Syrian, in accordance with the government’s commitment to resettle 25,000 Syrian refugees by the end of February, and thousands more throughout the year. It also plans to triple the number of privately sponsored refugees to 18,000 in 2016.

Source: The Globe and Mail, March 8, 2016