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Moving to Canada?

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Andrey Vasilyev

Living in Canada, from Russia

"When moving to a huge city such as Vancouver, InterNations made it easy for me to find fellow expats and the network that I needed."

Amarilis Castillo

Living in Canada, from Spain

"InterNations make networking in such a large city so much easier with their events and extensive information."

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Canada at a Glance

Moving to Canada

If you expect to see wilderness, forests and moose when moving to Canada, we’re afraid we have bad news for you. Your expat life may be less about Canada’s stunning scenery, and more about visa applications and finding a home. InterNations helps you gather important info before your relocation!

For centuries, heading towards Canada has been a popular option for those seeking a new home abroad. Thousands of immigrants, expats and students still move to Canada every year. These days, some simply go there for several months or a couple of years while others settle in Canada in order to start a new life here.

Welcoming newcomers from abroad is a well-established tradition in this country. While historically, emigrants moving to the True North used to be mainly of European origin, most immigrants come from Asian countries nowadays. The local authorities have a broad immigration policy, and there are also specific visa programs for people who move to Canada temporarily.

Canada's Current Economic Climate

Canada’s continuing economic success makes moving to the world’s second largest country an attractive option for many expats-to-be. Relocating here means nothing short of starting a new life in one of the world’s wealthiest nations.

As is to be expected from a “First World” country, the service sector is the most important part of the Canadian economy these days, with three quarters of the workforce employed in this field. But still, primary industries also play a vital role in the Canadian economy. Logging and the oil, gas and minerals industries are of particular importance, and in some cases even among the first images that might pop into mind when thinking about Canada and its workforce. The quintessential Canadian Lumberjack is not mere legend!

The Results of the Economic Crisis

Self-made expats coming to Canada in order to start a new job will be especially interested in the unemployment rate. Before the global economic crisis, the national unemployment rate lingered around 6%, but it is now slightly higher (around 7.3%).

Nevertheless, you will soon realize that the country is quickly recovering from economic downfall. The major banks have emerged from the financial crisis in an even better global position, due to strong capitalization and conservative lending rules. Canada’s economy even managed to achieve slight growth in the first years of our decade.

Canada: Regional Disparities

When planning  the big step abroad to Canada, potential expats should consider the strong regional disparities in economic development. Chances are high that you will live in the south, within 160 km of the US border – around 90% of the population live in this area. Consequently, most of the industries which offer opportunities for expats moving to Canada are located there, too.

The northern parts of Alberta and Saskatchewan hold a large number of oil and gas fields as well as oil sands, which contribute to the economic success of these regions. They attract investors and workers from all over the world. Other regions, such as the Atlantic Provinces, face more economic difficulties and are less frequently a destination for expats relocating to Canada.

InterNations Expat Magazine