Filipinos now 4th largest racial group in Canada: 2021 census

Statistics Canada projects Filipino population to reach 2M by 2041

By Charmaine Y. Rodriguez

Filipinos now make up the fourth largest racial group in Canada–close to a million–and the number is projected to reach 2 million by 2041, Statistics Canada reported.

In 2021, three racialized groups represented 16.1% of Canada’s total population. These are South Asians (2.6 million people; 7.1%), Chinese (1.7 million; 4.7%) and Black people (1.5 million; 4.3%), with each population topping one million already. In 2016, these groups represented 13.6% of Canada’s total population or a 2.5% growth in a span of five years.

There are now 960,000 Filipinos in Canada or about 2.6% of its 38,929,902 total population as of July 1, 2022.

“Canada has a long history of immigration. Millions of people from all over the world have chosen, and continue to choose, Canada as their new home. In 2021, more than 8.3 million people, or almost one-quarter (23.0%) of the population, were, or had ever been, a landed immigrant or permanent resident in Canada. This was the largest proportion since Confederation, topping the previous 1921 record of 22.3%, and the highest among the G7,” Statistics Canada’s press release read.

The fifth racial group with the highest number are Arabs (690,000; 1.9%), followed by Latin Americans (580,000; 1.6%), Southeast Asians (390,000; 1.1%), West Asians (360,000; 1.0%), Koreans (220,000; 0.6%) and the Japanese group (99,000; 0.3%).

The population of each group has continued to grow with each census, it also said. 

Filipinos ranked third in the immigrant group that had the highest increase from 2016 to 2021. South Asians posted the highest growth at 647,000, followed by Blacks (+349,000), Filipinos (+177,000) and Arabs (+171,000).

The Japanese group (+6,000) posted the lowest growth over the same period.

According to Statistics Canada projections, by 2041, South Asians would reach 5 million people, the Chinese and Black populations could each exceed 3 million, and the Filipino population could go over 2 million.

All racialized groups in Canada have been growing from 2001 to 2021.

Immigration continues to be the main driver of population growth of each racialized group, the report said. 

Of the number, 69.3% of the immigrant population in 2021 were racialized groups, and the proportion is even higher among recent immigrants who were admitted since 2016 (83.0%). By comparison, the proportion is significantly smaller for non-immigrants (11.4%).

However, for several racialized groups, part of their population growth also comes from Canadian-born children. The population of children under the age of 5 born in Canada increased for the West Asian (+39.6%), South Asian (+21.6%), Black (+21.5%), Filipino (+18.7%) and Arab (+14.7%) groups.

Filipinos have a more recent history of immigration to Canada. According to 2021 figures, just over 7 in 10 Filipinos (72.6%) had immigrated to Canada in the previous 20 years. Nearly 75 percent of people in the Filipino group were born in the Philippines, while most others were already born in Canada (24.7%).

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