Saskatoon population up 2.8%, Regina up 0.6%

New information from the 2006 census shows Saskatchewan's population is still shrinking and the growth of its two biggest cities has not kept pace with the national rate over the last five years.

New information from the 2006 census shows Saskatchewan's populationis still shrinking and the growth of its two biggest cities has not kept pace with the national rate over the last five years.

Statistics Canada released the first data from last year's census on Tuesday, and it showed the population of Saskatoon has increased by 2.8 per cent since the 2001 census.

When the census was taken in May 2006, the population of Saskatoon was 202,340, compared with 196,861 in 2001.

Meanwhile, the population of Regina increased 0.6 per cent. When the census was taken in May 2006, the population of Regina was 179,246, compared with 178,225 in 2001.

During the same five-year period, Canada's population increased 5.4 per cent, while the population of Saskatchewan decreased by 1.1 per cent. The drop in Saskatchewan's numberscontinues the downward trend that started after 1986.

The census indicates booming Alberta had the highest growth rate among all provinces— its 10.6 per cent population gain was attributed mostly to the influx of people from other parts of Canada who have gone there to work in the oil business.

Other provinces that experienced growth were Ontario (6.6 per cent), British Columbia (5.3 per cent), Quebec (4.3 per cent), Manitoba (2.6 per cent), Nova Scotia (0.6 per cent), Prince Edward Island (0.4 per cent) and New Brunswick (0.1 per cent).

The new census data shows the provinces that experienced loss in population were Newfoundland and Labrador (-1.5 per cent) and Saskatchewan (-1.1 per cent).

In the North, all three territories experienced growth higher than the national average from 2001-06.

Nunavut's population grew 10.2 per cent and the Yukon increased 5.9 per cent. The population of the Northwest Territories increased 11.0 per cent, but Statistics Canada cautioned that the actual growth rate may not be that high. It said the reported increase is likely the result of an undercount of N.W.T. inhabitants in 2001.

Canada's population as of census day 2006 was 31,612,897, Statistics Canada reported.

The population of other provinces and territories:

  • Ontario, 12,160,282
  • Quebec, 7,546,131
  • British Columbia, 4,113,487
  • Alberta, 3,290,350
  • Manitoba, 1,148,401
  • Saskatchewan, 968,157
  • Nova Scotia, 913,462
  • New Brunswick, 729,997
  • Newfoundland and Labrador, 505,469
  • Prince Edward Island, 135,851
  • Northwest Territories, 41,464
  • Yukon Territory, 30,372
  • Nunavut, 29,474

The census is conducted every five years by Statistics Canada and is based on information filled out by Canadians on the census day of May 16, 2006.