Alberta population growth to lead nation: StatsCan

Twenty-five-year projections say other Prairie provinces would also see considerable growth

Statistics Canada says that in all scenarios the rate of population growth in Alberta would be the highest among Canadian provinces over the next 25 years.

“By 2043, Alberta’s population would number between six million and 7.3 million inhabitants depending on the scenario, compared with 4.3 million in 2018,” said the federal agency.

“Together, Alberta and Ontario would account for more than half of Canada’s projected growth between 2018 and 2043 in all scenarios. Alberta’s population could surpass that of British Columbia by 2043, according to almost all scenarios. The other Prairie provinces would also see considerable growth over the next 25 years: by 2043, the combined population of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta would be slightly larger than Quebec’s population in all projection scenarios.”

While the populations of many developed countries are expected to decrease, Canada’s population is projected to grow over the next 50 years, largely because of strong immigration, said StatsCan.

It said the Canadian population has grown substantially in recent years, increasing from 30.7 million people in 2000 to 37.1 million in 2018.

The projections show that growth would continue in Canada over the next 50 years, and that the population could reach between 44.4 million and 70.2 million inhabitants by 2068. In the medium-growth scenario, the Canadian population would grow from 37.1 million inhabitants in 2018 to 55.2 million by 2068.

“According to the low- and medium-growth scenarios, the rate of population growth would slow in the coming years, owing mainly to an increasing number of deaths relative to births. The expected increase in the number of deaths is mainly related to population aging,” said Statistics Canada.

“In all scenarios, immigration would remain the key driver of population growth over the next 50 years, as has been the case since the early 1990s.

“Increasing share of people aged 65 and older, decreasing share of the working-age population. According to all scenarios, Canada’s population would continue to become older in the coming years at both the national and the provincial and territorial levels.”

By 2068, the proportion of the population aged 65 and older would reach between 21.4 per cent and 29.5 per cent, depending on the scenario. In comparison, 17.2 per cent of Canadians were aged 65 and over in 2018, it said, adding that during the same period, the share of the working-age population – that is, people aged 15 to 64, most of whom are in the labour force – would decrease according to all projection scenarios, from 66.7 per cent in 2018 to between 57.9 per cent and 61.4 per cent in 2068.

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