2006 was a record year for British emigration to Canada, with a total of 6,542 Brits receiving a permanent residence visa.
This, according to newly released data from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, is the highest since 1997 – from which the current means of collating statistics dates.
The figure is an 11 per cent increase over figures for 2005, and made the United Kingdom the seventh-biggest source country for immigrants entering Canada in 2006. This increase was despite a 4 per cent decrease in the overall numbers admitted through Canada’s immigration programme – from 262,239 in 2005 to 251,649 in 2006 – and a massive 22 per cent drop – to 33,080 – in the number of Chinese nationals becoming permanent residents of Canada, although the country did still head the 2006 league table of source countries.
In fact, considering that there’s been a well-publicised increase in the visa processing times at the Canadian High Commission (CHC) in London, which deals with visa applications from Brits, the increase could be considered something of a surprise.
As is well documented in the Vancouver media, one of the main sources for keeping the real estate market in Vancouver buoyant, is immigration from countries such as the UK where the exchange rate, even with the strong Canadian dollar, continues to be favourable.