Top 10 countries most interested in moving to Canada


Published December 20, 2023 at 3:03 pm

top countries move to canada
Photo: Karolina Grabowska

A new report aimed to identify countries where people are most interested in making Canada home.

In 2022, Canada welcomed 437,180 immigrants and saw a net increase in the number of non-permanent residents estimated at 607,782. Both of these numbers represent the highest levels on record, according to Statistics Canada.

And Canada’s population continues to grow. The most recent numbers show a 1.1 per cent increase from July 1 this year to Oct. 1 with a population of 40,528,396, according to Statistics Canada.

In a recent study by Top Move, a Canadian moving company, experts analyzed online searches to identify the top 10 countries most interested in moving to Canada.

To ensure a fair comparison, search volumes were adjusted for population size, revealing searches per 100,000 people, according to Top Move. Additionally, quality of life and cost of living data were included to highlight the motivations behind relocation.

The study put Iceland in the top spot with the highest interest in moving to Canada per capita.

Although the quality of life in Iceland is higher than in Canada, the Icelanders are still keen to relocate, due to the highest cost of living on the list, Top Move suggests.

Lebanon holds the second spot on the list of countries most interested in moving to Canada. The motivation for this interest is driven by Lebanon’s lower quality of life (lowest on the list), despite its cost of living being lower than that in Canada, the study notes.

The third country is Ireland — perhaps driven by Ireland’s lower quality of life and higher cost of living. Additionally, the absence of a language barrier adds to Canada’s appeal as a destination for moving.

New Zealand’s residents are the fourth most interested in moving to Canada. The higher cost of living contributes to its ranking, despite having a higher quality of life than in Canada.

top countries move to canada

Singapore ranks fifth on the list of countries most interested in moving to Canada. Singapore’s good quality of life comes with higher living costs, so moving to Canada might offer better financial stability.

The United Kingdom shows the sixth highest interest in moving to Canada. This trend is primarily driven by the lower cost of living in Canada, even though the UK has a higher quality of life.

Next on the list is Israel. Aside from the geopolitical situation, the main driving factors behind this interest are a higher quality of life and reduced living costs that Canada presents.

Finland’s residents are the eighth most interested in moving to Canada. Finnish residents, while enjoying a high quality of life (ranking second), are drawn to Canada for its economic opportunities, given the more affordable cost of living.

Number nine is Norway. With a higher cost of living, Norwegians are keen to relocate to Canada for a better financial environment.

Saudi Arabia completes the list with residents five times less interest than in Iceland. The level of interest is nearly the same as in Norway, yet Saudi Arabia has a lower cost of living and a lower quality of life compared to Canada.

Top Move found that Canada has a higher quality of life than most of the researched countries but also has a higher cost of living than 80 per cent of the countries on the list.

For more information, see the Top Move report here.

While these countries may have residents that considered a move to Canada, the actual immigrants entering Canada come from 10 countries not on this list.

According to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada these were the top 10 countries new immigrants came from in 2022:

  1. India (118, 095 immigrants) – 27 per cent
  2. China (31,815 immigrants) – 7.2 per cent
  3. Afghanistan (23,735 immigrants) – 5.4 per cent
  4. Nigeria (22,085 immigrants) – 5.05 per cent
  5. Philippines (22,070 immigrants) – 5.04 per cent
  6. France (14,145 immigrants) – 3.2 per cent
  7. Pakistan (11,585 immigrants) – 2.6 per cent
  8. Iran (11,105 immigrants) – 2.5 per cent
  9. United States of America (10,400 immigrants) – 2.3 per cent
  10. Syria (8,500 immigrants) – 1.9 per cent
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