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Study: Non-permanent residents in Canada: Portrait of a growing population from the 2021 Census

July 13, 2023

By Statistics Canada |

Non-permanent residents (NPRs) represent a growing share of Canada’s population; they fill critical labour shortages in key sectors, participate in Canada’s postsecondary education system, and contribute to the Canadian economy as consumers.

Like many countries, Canada grants temporary foreign workers, international students and asylum claimants the right to live in Canada temporarily. In 2021, close to 1 million (924,850) NPRs were enumerated in the census, making up 2.5% of Canada’s population.

The largest segment of NPRs had a work permit, such as temporary foreign workers. In 2021, 40.1% of NPRs had a work permit only, and another 14.2% had a work and study permit. NPRs with a study permit alone (such as international students) represented 21.9% of all NPRs, while asylum claimants, those seeking refugee protection, accounted for 15.1%.

The remaining 8.7% was a combination of other NPR types, including temporary resident permit holders, family members of NPRs and parent and grandparent super visa holders, all of whom live in Canada as their usual place of residence.

Today, Statistics Canada is releasing a study titled Non-permanent residents in Canada: Portrait of a growing population from the 2021 Census, which looks at the characteristics of NPRs by their reason for temporary residence in Canada, based on results from the 2021 Census of Population.

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