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Home2024 IssuesJuly 2024News in numbers: international students contribute $31 billion to Canadian economy

News in numbers: international students contribute $31 billion to Canadian economy

Analysis from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) estimates the total GDP contribution of international students was $30.9 billion (US$22.6 billion, £17.6 billion) in 2022.

The report also estimates international student spending supported 361,230 jobs in the same year.

Ontario attracted the greatest number of international students, at 432,272, and made the largest contribution to GDP, accounting for 54.6% ($16.9 billion).

Though Ontario saw the most students, Prince Edward Island recorded the highest percentage increase in the number of study permit holders. From 2000 to 2022, that number has increased by more than 1800%.

India has seen significant growth as a source market for long-term students, with an increase of 47%, totalling 319,130 study permit holders in 2022. Other markets also saw strong growth, such as the Philippines at 112% (32,455 study permit holders), and Hong Kong at 73% (13,100 study permit holders).

Student spending has more than doubled between 2016 and 2022, from $15.5 billion to $37.3 billion. This is an average annual increase of almost 16% per year.

Analysis from ICEF suggests this pattern would have continued, with international student contribution to GDP likely approaching $40 billion in 2023.

Image courtesy of Sandro Schuh
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