Population increases by 6,600 people
New population numbers released by Statistics Canada show that Saskatchewan grew by 6,606 people in the third quarter of 2012, and that the population reached an all-time high of 1,086,564, as of September 30.
From October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012, Saskatchewan‘s population jumped by 23,024. That's the most growth in a single year since 1921, beating the mark of 22,154 set in the previous quarter of this year.
Premier Brad Wall said the Saskatchewan Plan for Growth released by the government in October will ensure this growth continues and that the government will meet the challenges of a growing province.
"Growth means more jobs and opportunities for Saskatchewan people," Wall said. "It means more and more young people are choosing to stay in Saskatchewan after they finish their education instead of moving elsewhere.
"Growth means that this fall, we were able to provide additional funding to schools with rapidly expanding enrolment while still maintaining the only balanced provincial budget in Canada. These are some of the benefits of a growing province and that's why we want it to continue."
Saskatchewan's population grew by 2.16 per cent in the past year, second only to Alberta among Canadian provinces. Only Saskatchewan, Alberta and Newfoundland enjoyed positive interprovincial migration (more people moving in than moving out) in the past quarter.
Saskatchewan's net in-migration of 1,286 people in the past quarter included 714 from Ontario, 248 from Manitoba, 194 from BC and 34 from Alberta. The population increase also includes net international migration of 3,734 and a natural increase (births minus deaths) of 1,586.
The Saskatchewan Plan for Growth sets a target of 1.2 million people living in Saskatchewan by 2020. Wall said the province is on track to meet that goal.
"A strong economy, a balanced budget, thousands of job opportunities - these are the foundations of a growing province and that's why Saskatchewan is the place to be in Canada right now,' Wall said.
The population report was released on December 18.