It is projected that without significant policy changes, including a substantial increase in immigration, the costs required to support retirees could undermine the strength of Canada’s economy in the coming decades.
The report proposed four scenarios for the future of Canada’s population growth.
As Canada’s population ages, more pressure is put on social welfare systems to support the elderly.
In the meantime, more jobs may become available as workers retire, and an influx of young families and workers is needed to fill these positions.
That number, argues the report, is not sufficient to sustain a strong economy and support an aging population.
The subsequent slowing in economic growth will impact revenue for governments, and consequently job creation and social services.
The number of homeowners also increases, leading to greater spending on durable goods.
Another scenario posed by the report projects that if immigration grows moderately, but shifts to a younger demographic of new arrivals, the impact on Canada’s economy and fertility rates could be significant.
Across all scenarios, it is clear that immigration is an essential component, and that improving the fertility rate — 1.6 births per woman in 2015 — is not enough to maintain the economy.
In the report’s most optimistic scenario, it is projected that Canada inviting up to 413,000 immigrants per year by 2030 will result in the strongest economic growth.