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Canada’s seniors population outlook: Uncharted territory

Over the next 20 years, Canada’s seniors population — those age 65 and older — is expected to grow by 68%.

Over the last 40 years, it has more than tripled in size. Between 1977 and 1997, the seniors population grew from about 2 million to 3.5 million. Today, in 2017, it sits at about 6.2 million. 20 years from now, in 2037, it is expected to number 10.4 million.

Compared with the rate of growth for the overall seniors population, the older seniors population — the subset of seniors age 75 and older — is growing at a faster pace.

Expressed as a factor, in 2037, this population in Canada is expected to be 2.1 times its current size (in 2017). The population of older seniors (age 75+) in each province and territory is expected to grow significantly between 2017 and 2037, as follows:

  • Newfoundland and Labrador, 2.2 times the current size;
  • Prince Edward Island, 2.3 times;
  • Nova Scotia, 2.1 times;
  • New Brunswick, 2.1 times;
  • Quebec, 2.0 times;
  • Ontario, 2.1 times;
  • Manitoba, 2.0 times;
  • Saskatchewan, 1.9 times;
  • Alberta, 2.8 times;
  • British Columbia, 2.1 times;
  • Yukon, 2.9 times;
  • Northwest Territories, 3.3 times; and
  • Nunavut, 5.7 times.