Canada Quebec losing 7,000 residents to other provinces every year: analysis

15:51  05 december  2017
15:51  05 december  2017 Source:   The Gazette

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The number of people leaving Quebec for other provinces rose between 2011 and 2016, when compared with the previous five- year period, according to an analysis of Statistics Canada census data conducted by the Association for Canadian Studies.

The number of people leaving Quebec for other provinces rose between 2011 and 2016, when compared with the previous five- year period, according to an analysis of Statistics Canada census data conducted by the Association for Canadian Studies.

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The number of people leaving Quebec for other provinces rose between 2011 and 2016, when compared with the previous five-year period, according to an analysis of Statistics Canada census data conducted by the Association for Canadian Studies.

“On average, we’re losing about 7,000 people per year from interprovincial migration over the last five years,” said Jack Jedwab, the president of the association.

The analysis found that between 2011 and 2016, Quebec had a net loss of 36,955 residents, as 55,365 people moved here from other parts of the country while 92,320 people left for other provinces.

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Simply put, Quebec loses relatively few residents each year but it attracts only minimal migration from other Canadian provinces , which explains its comparatively high level of net out-migration. Quebec lost 582,470 residents to other provinces over this time period.

MONTREAL -- The number of Quebecers who left for other provinces between 1971 and 2015 was almost 600, 000 higher than the number of Canadians who Moreover, Quebec is the only province in Canada to have suffered a net loss in interprovincial migration every year during that time, the

Between 2006 and 2011, Quebec’s net loss of residents through interprovincial migration was 20,245.

“It’s not just that more people are leaving, it’s that fewer people are coming here,” Jedwab said. Between 2011 and 2016, “8,000 fewer people came here than was the case in the previous five years and 8,000 more people left.”

It’s the second time in a row that the province’s net population loss through interprovincial migration has almost doubled between censuses. Between 2001 and 2006, Quebec had a net loss of 11,650 residents.

Since then, the province has seen increases in net out-migration by anglophones, allophones and francophones.

Between 2001 and 2006, 5,000 more francophones moved to Quebec from other parts of the country than left the province. Between 2011 and 2016, the province had a net loss of 9,225 francophones.

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Quebec also chronically loses non-immigrant residents to other provinces via internal migration. Since 1966, Quebec has lost approximately 30, 000 residents annually to English-speaking provinces and welcomed only 16, 000 to 17, 000 Canadian migrants.

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Between 2011 and 2016, 32,165 anglophones left the province, while 21,990 moved here, resulting in a net loss of 10,175 people.

During that same period, 25,470 people whose mother tongue is neither French nor English left the province, while 10,030 moved here from elsewhere in Canada, resulting in a net loss of 15,440 people.

“The general explanation for such things is economics,” Jedwab said, explaining that people are leaving because they believe there are better opportunities elsewhere.

The largest net losses between 2011 and 2016 were among people age 25 to 34, the analysis found. The province had a net loss of 6,270 people age 25 to 29, and a net loss of 5,610 people age 30 to 34.

Because those are working-age people, it suggests that they left Quebec for employment opportunities.

“As much as our economy has improved, some of these other economies have boomed,” Jedwab said.

In an August speech, Premier Philippe Couillard encouraged “exiled” anglos to return to Quebec. Jedwab said the province should focus on reducing out-migration first.

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That will come from a strengthening economy and more job opportunities, Jedwab said.

The smallest net loss, 440 people, was among people age 20 to 24, the result of people coming to the province to study in universities.

But with people slightly older leaving the province in much larger numbers, Jedwab said, “the suggestion inside that data is that people who are coming here for university studies aren’t staying.”

The majority of people who leave Quebec for other parts of the country move to Ontario, according to the analysis.

About two-thirds of anglophones and allophones who leave Quebec move to Ontario, Jedwab said, while just over half of francophones who leave go there, too.

Alberta, British Columbia and New Brunswick were the next most popular destinations for francophones.

Ontario also had a net population loss through interprovincial migration between 2011 and 2016, losing 37,580 people.

Alberta had the largest net gain between 2011 and 2016, the analysis showed: 67,285 people. It was followed by British Columbia, which attracted 36,620 more people than it lost.

However, Alberta’s numbers may be changing. At the end of June, according to figures Statistics Canada gathered from tax returns, Alberta had seen eight consecutive quarters of net population loss through interprovincial migration. Quebec, though, still lost more people to other provinces than it gained.

While Quebec may be losing people to other provinces, its overall population grew from 7.9 million to 8.1 million between 2011 and 2016. That was largely because of immigration from outside the country.

jserebrin@postmedia.com

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