Canada 2060

By: Priyanka Khemraj

Introduction

In today's day and age, a question we all ask ourselves is, "What's next?" What will our population be like? What will happen to the Aboriginal population? What role will immigration play in the future? All these questions foreshadow how Canada will look like in the future. Everyone wants to know what the future holds in store for their lives. With the amount of technology we have today, it is amazing how much we can predict about our future in Canada. We can look at Canada's future from many different perspectives. The three views that will affect Canada's future are: Demographics, First Nations, and Immigration.

Demographics

Current Demographics

Population

  • Our population is estimated at 35,540,400 (2014) and has increased 1.1% from the previous year.
  • Our population increase has been noticeably lower for the past 30 years and is continuing to decrease. (Statistics Canada, Canada’s population estimates: Age and sex, 2014)
  • Our natural increase rate is decreasing compared to past years.

Birth Rate/ Death Rate

  • Canada is currently in stage 4 of the demographic transition model. This means we have a low birth and death rate.
  • Population is mostly middle aged (45-60)
  • Birth rate = 10.29 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)
  • Death rate = 8.31 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.) (indexmundi)

Dependency Ratios

  • Total dependency ratio = 47.2% (2014)
  • Youth dependency ratio = 24.2% (2014)
  • Elderly dependency ratio = 22.9% (2014) (indexmundi)

Life Expectancy

  • Male = 79.01 years (2014)
  • Female = 84.42 years (2014) (indexmundi)

Urbanization

  • Urban Population = 80.7% of total population (2012)
  • Rate of Urbanization = 1.06% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)(indexmundi)

Demographics in 2060

In 2060, we can predict that Canada will be quite different compared to how it is today. The rate of urbanization is almost guaranteed to increase. Therefore, the urban population will increase and the rural population will decrease.


Since Canada is currently in stage 4 of the demographic transition model, we will start shifting into stage 5. Which is when the birth rate will decrease drastically compared to before and the death rate will remain low. Canada's birth rate will decrease due to women not having as many children due to factors such economic/financial issues and woman working full time and having better educations, therefore not having as much time for kids. Furthermore, the "baby boomers" who make up the largest segment of Canada's population, are getting older. As a result, the population is expected to have more adults over the age of 65 years old than kids under 16 years old.


Canada’s population will primarily become an older society. This will result in a much larger dependency load, because of the need to support the rising cost of health care needed for the elderly and also to pay the pensions for those who retire. As for the death rate, it will increase due to the fact that our population will be predominantly older and the elderly will begin to pass away. Also due to the older population, Canada will have a large job deficit and a major shortage of jobs in certain industries such as health care (nurses, doctors) and the skilled trades (electricians, plumbers, carpenters). This will make Canada a lot more dependent on immigration than ever before. The demographics in Canada will change drastically, which will lead our country in a new direction we have not yet experienced.

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Canada's demographic and geographic shift

First Nations

Current Trends

Aboriginal Population

  • Approximately 799,010 people (3% of Canada's population), identified themselves as an Aboriginal in 1996.
  • In 2006, that number increased to 1,172,790 people (4% of Canada’s population).
  • As of 2011, it was reported that 1,400,685 people (4.3% of the population) identified themselves as Aboriginal.
The number of identified First Nations has increased by nearly 25 percent between 2006 to 2011 (Alysworth and Trovato, Demography of Aboriginal People, Canadian Encyclopedia)



Within the percentage of people who identified themselves as Aboriginals:


  • 60.8 % identified as First Nations
  • 32.3 % identified as Métis
  • 4.2 % identified as Inuit
  • 3% identified as other Aboriginal identities/multiple Aboriginal identities (Statistics Canada, Aboriginal Peoples in Canada: First Nations People, Métis and Inuit)


The Aboriginal population is continuously increasing due to the higher fertility/birth rate and shorter life expectancy, therefore, they have a primarily younger population with almost 50% of their population under the age of 24 years old.


As of 2013, approximately 50% of all status First Nation children are living in poverty.(Huffington Post) This has resulted in a migration of Aboriginal people away from reservations to urban centers due to the lack of economic opportunity in and near reserves.

First Nations Children Living In Poverty - Study

First Nations in 2060

In the year 2060, the Aboriginal population will continue to increase at a very rapid rate. Canada’s Aboriginal youth population is growing at three times the national average and the Aboriginal youth will play a very big role in Canada’s future. (Davidso and Jamieson, Canada’s future depends on Aboriginal youth)


Canada will have to repair their relationship with the Aboriginal communities because, the Aboriginal population has a very high birth rate compared to Canada’s birth rate. Canada will need assistance when it comes to population growth, and repairing our relation will allow for our population growth to excel. As Canada’s population is ageing, there will be a major shortage of workers once the “Baby Boomer” generation retires. The Aboriginal youth will be needed to fill these jobs and assist in sustaining our economy. Canada’s future will depend on the upcoming Aboriginal youth.


In terms of living, the migration of Aboriginals to urban areas will grow, in order for the Aboriginal population to have better economic opportunities. The isolation of most Aboriginal communities will restrict the upcoming Aboriginal population of opportunities. Therefore, the Aboriginal population will have to move out in order to achieve maximum potential in Canada. The cost of transporting goods will be too overpriced for the Aboriginals to afford especially with the fact that there will be an extensive lack of jobs in and around reserves. (Cutter, Youth and the Future of Aboriginal Canada)

Immigration

Current Immigration

Canada is often referred to as the “Land of Immigrants” because of the millions of newcomers that have settled here from all around the world. Approximately 250,000 immigrants come to Canada each year. Immigrants are highly attracted to Canada because of the amount of job and education opportunities, safety and the strong economy. Some of the push factors immigrants face are war, discrimination, danger, threats and lack of opportunities.


As of 2012, the top 5 source countries immigrating to Canada are:

1. China - 12.8%

2. Philippines – 12.7%

3. India – 11.2%

4. Pakistan – 3.9%

5. United States – 3.7%


The three provinces that attract the most immigrants are:

1. Ontario - 37%

2. Quebec – 20%

3. British Columbia – 17%

So many people immigrate to these provinces due to the large amount of opportunities available. Immigration is still continuing to grow in the prairie provinces. The share of immigrants settling in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta has rose from 9% in 1999 to 19% in 2009. (Ethnic diversity and immigration, Statistics Canada)


Canada’s immigration rate is continuing to grow. As of 2006, 19.8% of Canada’s population was immigrants, but that percentage has grown to 20.6% in 2013. (National Post) Canada is very dependent on immigration, as it is responsible for approximately 67% of Canada's population growth. Most of the immigrants allowed into Canada are “economic immigrants” due to the skills they offer.

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Immigration in 2060

In 2060, the amount of immigration will certainly increase. Canada’s decreasing birth rate, shrinking population, job shortages, retiring “Baby Boomers” and an ageing population will result in Canada having to open the doors to immigration wider than we ever have before.


Canada will become even more dependent on immigration than we are now. In the future immigration will account for nearly 80-90% of Canada’s population growth. It will also be more challenging for Canada to attract new immigrants due to other countries competing for immigration. Also, with the shortage of workers Canada will face in the future, our country will need immigrants to fill jobs in order to sustain our economy.


Some of the main countries that immigrants will migrate from will be China and India. This is due to their large amount of over population, and the amount of poverty. As a result of the large amount of immigrants, Canada will become more multicultural as well. With people coming from all over the world, Canada will become a very diverse country.


I also believe that the provinces immigrants will settle in will be different than it is currently. Immigrants will primarily settle in the Prairie Provinces (Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba) instead of Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia. This is because, the Prairie Provinces will have more job opportunities and less competition than the other provinces. In addition, the cost of living is also not as expensive in the Prairie Provinces compared to the three big provinces.

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Conclusion

In conclusion:

Canada's birth rate in the year 2060, will be lower than now, resulting in less children. Canada's population will begin ageing which will make the dependency load increase. Along with the ageing population comes a higher death rate as well.


The Aboriginal population will continue to increase due high a high birth rate. They will also move out of reserves and into more urban areas to have better job and education opportunities.


Immigration in the year 2060 will be Canada's major source of population growth. It will account for nearly 90% of Canada's population growth. Therefore, Canada will become more multicultural and diverse than ever.

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