Why choose Canada

Why choose Canada?

 

Cold weather and hockey may be internationally recognized symbols of Canada, but beyond its climate and recreation activities, this great nation has a lot to offer newcomers.

In 2012, Canada welcomed a record number of immigrants for the seventh consecutive year.  257,515 immigrants entered Canada; a slight increase from 2011 with 248,851.  The federal government has set an annual immigration target of 240,000 to 265,000; making Canada one of the most immigrant friendly countries in the world on a per capita basis.  “Immigration has always been a sustaining feature of Canada’s history and continues to play an important role in building out country,” said Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister.

So, what makes Canada so great?

1 Standard of Living

Canada consistently presents high scores on the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) quality of life index.  The average household net-adjusted disposable income is US$28,194 in Canada, more than the OECD average of US$23,047 per year and life expectancy is 81 years, one year higher than the OECD average of 80 years.

 2 Labour Market

Canada ranks high on the OECD labour market with 72.5 percent of individuals aged 15-64 employed (compared to 67.3 percent in the United States) in 2013.   Canada continues to be attractive to skilled newcomers. Between now and 2021, a million jobs are expected to go unfilled in Canada.  These expected labour shortages mean there are more opportunities for skilled newcomers.

3 Health Care

Canadians are immensely proud of our health care system, and with good reason.  Citizens and permanent residents enjoy access to publicly-funded health care that guarantees coverage of medically necessary services regardless of income level.

4 Natural Beauty

Spanning two oceans, Canada is a geographically diverse country and boasts some of the most beautiful geology in the world.  From the rugged Rocky Mountains to the postcard-perfect Atlantic coastline, flat prairie land and a multitude of forests, lakes and rivers in between, Canada is a playground for nature-lovers.  Our high scores in environmental cleanliness compared to other industrialized countries also makes the country attractive.  89 percent of the population are satisfied with the quality of their water, more than the OECD average of 84 percent.

5 A Safe Place to Live

Canada’s national crime rate is lower than many other OECD countries.  The homicide rate has been steadily declining since 1975 and was 1.73 in 2011.  This rate is about one-third of the U.S. rate (4.80).  Rates of violent crime are generally higher in the larger urban centres of Western Canada.

 6 Education

Access to education is a priority in Canada.  Public school education is free for students across the country, up to grade 12.  88 percent of adults aged 25-64 have earned the equivalent of a high-school degree, well above the OECD average of 74 percent.  The average student scored 527 in reading literacy, math and science in the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment, higher than the OECD average of 497; making Canada one of the strongest OECD countries in education skills.

7 Social Programs

Canada cares for its residents.  In addition to access to free healthcare and public education, Canada offers many social programs including unemployment insurance for individuals faced with job layoffs, social welfare for individuals who are unable to support themselves and aren’t able to work, childcare benefits and an old age pension, to name a few.

8 A Multicultural Society

Canada values the contribution of immigrants and embraces all cultures and religions.  Multiculturalism in Canada is the belief that one can feel a sense of belonging to Canada without denying their ancestral culture.  Canada is ranked among the world’s top countries in terms of its integration of immigrants.

This article first appeared HERE.

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