Photos of Canada

Replica Norse (Viking) sod longhouse, north of the archaeological site at L’Anse Aux Meadows.

Introduction

Background

A land of vast distances and rich natural resources, Canada became a self-governing dominion in 1867, while retaining ties to the British crown. Canada gained legislative independence from Britain in 1931 and formalized its constitutional independence from the UK when it passed the Canada Act in 1982. Economically and technologically, the nation has developed in parallel with the US, its neighbor to the south across the world's longest international border. Canada faces the political challenges of meeting public demands for quality improvements in health care, education, social services, and economic competitiveness, as well as responding to the particular concerns of predominantly francophone Quebec. Canada also aims to develop its diverse energy resources while maintaining its commitment to the environment.

Visit the Definitions and Notes page to view a description of each topic.

Geography

Location

Northern North America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean on the east, North Pacific Ocean on the west, and the Arctic Ocean on the north, north of the conterminous US

Geographic coordinates

60 00 N, 95 00 W

Map references

North America

Area

total: 9,984,670 sq km

land: 9,093,507 sq km

water: 891,163 sq km

comparison ranking: total 3

Area - comparative

slightly larger than the US

Area comparison map:
Area comparison map

Land boundaries

total: 8,892 km

border countries: US 8,891 km (includes 2,475 km with Alaska); Denmark (Greenland) 1.3 km

 

Coastline

202,080 km

note: the Canadian Arctic Archipelago - consisting of 36,563 islands, several of them some of the world's largest - contributes to Canada easily having the longest coastline in the world

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate

varies from temperate in south to subarctic and arctic in north

Terrain

mostly plains with mountains in west, lowlands in southeast

Elevation

highest point: Mount Logan 5,959 m

lowest point: Atlantic/Pacific/Arctic Oceans 0 m

mean elevation: 487 m

Natural resources

bauxite, iron ore, nickel, zinc, copper, gold, lead, uranium, rare earth elements, molybdenum, potash, diamonds, silver, fish, timber, wildlife, coal, petroleum, natural gas, hydropower

Land use

agricultural land: 6.8% (2018 est.)

arable land: 4.7% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.5% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 1.6% (2018 est.)

forest: 34.1% (2018 est.)

other: 59.1% (2018 est.)

Irrigated land

9,045 sq km (2015)

Major lakes (area sq km)

fresh water lake(s): Huron* - 35,972 sq km; Great Bear Lake - 31,328 sq km; Superior* - 28,754 sq km; Great Slave Lake - 28,568 sq km; Lake Winnipeg - 24,387 sq km; Erie* - 12,776 sq km; Ontario* - 9,790 sq km; Lake Athabasca - 7,935 sq km; Reindeer Lake - 6,650 sq km; Nettilling Lake - 5,542 sq km
note - Great Lakes* area shown as Canadian waters

Major rivers (by length in km)

Mackenzie - 4, 241 km; Yukon river source (shared with the US [m]) - 3,185 km; Saint Lawrence river mouth (shared with US) - 3,058 km; Nelson - 2,570 km; Columbia river source (shared with the US [m]) - 1,953 km; Churchill - 1,600 km; Fraser - 1,368 km; Ottawa - 1,271 km; Athabasca - 1,231 km; North Saskatchewan - 1,220 km; Liard - 1,115 km
note – [s] after country name indicates river source; [m] after country name indicates river mouth

Major watersheds (area sq km)

Atlantic Ocean drainage: Mississippi* (Gulf of Mexico) (3,202,185 sq km, Canada only 32,000 sq km), Nelson (Hudson Bay) (1,093,141 sq km), Saint Lawrence* (1,049,636 sq km, Canada only 839,200 sq km)
Arctic Ocean drainage: Mackenzie (1,706,388 sq km)
Pacific Ocean drainage: Yukon* (847,620 sq km, Canada only 823,800 sq km), Columbia* (657,501 sq km, Canada only 103,000 sq km)
note - watersheds shared with the US shown with *

Major aquifers

Northern Great Plains Aquifer

Population distribution

vast majority of Canadians are positioned in a discontinuous band within approximately 300 km of the southern border with the United States; the most populated province is Ontario, followed by Quebec and British Columbia

Natural hazards

continuous permafrost in north is a serious obstacle to development; cyclonic storms form east of the Rocky Mountains, a result of the mixing of air masses from the Arctic, Pacific, and North American interior, and produce most of the country's rain and snow east of the mountains

volcanism: the vast majority of volcanoes in Western Canada's Coast Mountains remain dormant

Geography - note

note 1: second-largest country in world (after Russia) and largest in the Americas; strategic location between Russia and US via north polar route; approximately 90% of the population is concentrated within 160 km (100 mi) of the US border

note 2: Canada has more fresh water than any other country and almost 9% of Canadian territory is water; Canada has at least 2 million and possibly over 3 million lakes - that is more than all other countries combined

People and Society

Population

total: 38,794,813

male: 19,234,729

female: 19,560,084 (2024 est.)

comparison rankings: female 38; male 38; total 37

Nationality

noun: Canadian(s)

adjective: Canadian

Ethnic groups

Canadian 15.6%, English 14.7%, Scottish 12.1%, French 11%, Irish 12.1%, German 8.1%, Chinese 4.7%, Italian 4.3%, First Nations 1.7%, Indian 3.7%, Ukrainian 3.5%, Metis 1.5% (2021 est.)

note: percentages add up to more than 100% because respondents were able to identify more than one ethnic origin

Languages

English (official) 87.1%, French (official) 29.1%, Chinese languages 4.2%, Spanish 3.2%, Punjabi 2.6%, Arabic 2.4%, Tagalog 2.3%, Italian 1.5% (2022 est.)

major-language sample(s):
The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information. (English)

The World Factbook, une source indispensable d'informations de base. (French)

French audio sample:

Religions

Christian 53.3%, Muslim 4.9%, Hindu 2.3%, Sikh 2.1%, Buddhist 1%, Jewish 0.9%, Traditional (North American Indigenous) 0.2%, other religions and traditional spirituality 0.6%, none 34.6% (2021 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 15.5% (male 3,098,478/female 2,929,148)

15-64 years: 63.4% (male 12,382,422/female 12,227,512)

65 years and over: 21% (2024 est.) (male 3,753,829/female 4,403,424)

2023 population pyramid:
2023 population pyramid

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 52.1

youth dependency ratio: 23.9

elderly dependency ratio: 28.2

potential support ratio: 3.6 (2021 est.)

Median age

total: 42.6 years (2024 est.)

male: 41.4 years

female: 43.8 years

comparison ranking: total 40

Population growth rate

0.71% (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 125

Birth rate

10 births/1,000 population (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 186

Death rate

8.2 deaths/1,000 population (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 82

Net migration rate

5.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 19

Population distribution

vast majority of Canadians are positioned in a discontinuous band within approximately 300 km of the southern border with the United States; the most populated province is Ontario, followed by Quebec and British Columbia

Urbanization

urban population: 81.9% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 0.95% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Major urban areas - population

6.372 million Toronto, 4.308 million Montreal, 2.657 million Vancouver, 1.640 million Calgary, 1.544 million Edmonton, 1.437 million OTTAWA (capital) (2023)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.85 male(s)/female

total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2024 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth

29.4 years (2019 est.)

Maternal mortality ratio

11 deaths/100,000 live births (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 142

Infant mortality rate

total: 4.3 deaths/1,000 live births (2024 est.)

male: 4.5 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 4 deaths/1,000 live births

comparison ranking: total 185

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 84.2 years (2024 est.)

male: 81.9 years

female: 86.6 years

comparison ranking: total population 5

Total fertility rate

1.58 children born/woman (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 189

Gross reproduction rate

0.77 (2024 est.)

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 99.3% of population

rural: 99.1% of population

total: 99.2% of population

unimproved: urban: 0.7% of population

rural: 0.9% of population

total: 0.8% of population (2020 est.)

Current health expenditure

12.9% of GDP (2020)

Physician density

2.44 physicians/1,000 population (2019)

Hospital bed density

2.5 beds/1,000 population (2019)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 99.1% of population

rural: 98.9% of population

total: 99% of population

unimproved: urban: 0.9% of population

rural: 1.1% of population

total: 1% of population (2020 est.)

Obesity - adult prevalence rate

29.4% (2016)

comparison ranking: 26

Alcohol consumption per capita

total: 8 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

beer: 3.5 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

wine: 2 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

spirits: 2.1 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

other alcohols: 0.4 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: total 44

Tobacco use

total: 13% (2020 est.)

male: 15.3% (2020 est.)

female: 10.7% (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: total 117

Education expenditures

5.2% of GDP (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 70

Literacy

total population: NA

male: NA

female: NA

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 17 years

male: 16 years

female: 17 years (2020)

Environment

Environment - current issues

metal smelting, coal-burning utilities, and vehicle emissions impacting agricultural and forest productivity; air pollution and resulting acid rain severely affecting lakes and damaging forests; ocean waters becoming contaminated due to agricultural, industrial, mining, and forestry activities

Environment - international agreements

party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Heavy Metals, Air Pollution-Multi-effect Protocol, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Marine Life Conservation

Climate

varies from temperate in south to subarctic and arctic in north

Land use

agricultural land: 6.8% (2018 est.)

arable land: 4.7% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.5% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 1.6% (2018 est.)

forest: 34.1% (2018 est.)

other: 59.1% (2018 est.)

Urbanization

urban population: 81.9% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 0.95% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Revenue from forest resources

0.08% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 119

Revenue from coal

0.08% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 27

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 6.39 micrograms per cubic meter (2019 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 544.89 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 101.82 megatons (2020 est.)

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 25,103,034 tons (2014 est.)

municipal solid waste recycled annually: 5,168,715 tons (2008 est.)

percent of municipal solid waste recycled: 20.6% (2008 est.)

Major lakes (area sq km)

fresh water lake(s): Huron* - 35,972 sq km; Great Bear Lake - 31,328 sq km; Superior* - 28,754 sq km; Great Slave Lake - 28,568 sq km; Lake Winnipeg - 24,387 sq km; Erie* - 12,776 sq km; Ontario* - 9,790 sq km; Lake Athabasca - 7,935 sq km; Reindeer Lake - 6,650 sq km; Nettilling Lake - 5,542 sq km
note - Great Lakes* area shown as Canadian waters

Major rivers (by length in km)

Mackenzie - 4, 241 km; Yukon river source (shared with the US [m]) - 3,185 km; Saint Lawrence river mouth (shared with US) - 3,058 km; Nelson - 2,570 km; Columbia river source (shared with the US [m]) - 1,953 km; Churchill - 1,600 km; Fraser - 1,368 km; Ottawa - 1,271 km; Athabasca - 1,231 km; North Saskatchewan - 1,220 km; Liard - 1,115 km
note – [s] after country name indicates river source; [m] after country name indicates river mouth

Major watersheds (area sq km)

Atlantic Ocean drainage: Mississippi* (Gulf of Mexico) (3,202,185 sq km, Canada only 32,000 sq km), Nelson (Hudson Bay) (1,093,141 sq km), Saint Lawrence* (1,049,636 sq km, Canada only 839,200 sq km)
Arctic Ocean drainage: Mackenzie (1,706,388 sq km)
Pacific Ocean drainage: Yukon* (847,620 sq km, Canada only 823,800 sq km), Columbia* (657,501 sq km, Canada only 103,000 sq km)
note - watersheds shared with the US shown with *

Major aquifers

Northern Great Plains Aquifer

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 4.87 billion cubic meters (2020 est.)

industrial: 27.51 billion cubic meters (2020 est.)

agricultural: 3.86 billion cubic meters (2020 est.)

Total renewable water resources

2.9 trillion cubic meters (2020 est.)

Geoparks

total global geoparks and regional networks: 5

global geoparks and regional networks: Perce; Stonehammer; Tumbler Ridge; Cliffs of Fundy; Discovery (2023)

Government

Country name

conventional long form: none

conventional short form: Canada

etymology: the country name likely derives from the St. Lawrence Iroquoian word "kanata" meaning village or settlement

Government type

federal parliamentary democracy (Parliament of Canada) under a constitutional monarchy; a Commonwealth realm; federal and state authorities and responsibilities regulated in constitution

Capital

name: Ottawa

geographic coordinates: 45 25 N, 75 42 W

time difference: UTC-5 (same time as Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins second Sunday in March; ends first Sunday in November

time zone note: Canada has six time zones

etymology: the city lies on the south bank of the Ottawa River, from which it derives its name; the river name comes from the Algonquin word "adawe" meaning "to trade" and refers to the indigenous peoples who used the river as a trade highway

Administrative divisions

10 provinces and 3 territories*; Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories*, Nova Scotia, Nunavut*, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Yukon*

Independence

1 July 1867 (union of British North American colonies); 11 December 1931 (recognized by UK per Statute of Westminster)

National holiday

Canada Day, 1 July (1867)

Constitution

history: consists of unwritten and written acts, customs, judicial decisions, and traditions dating from 1763; the written part of the constitution consists of the Constitution Act of 29 March 1867, which created a federation of four provinces, and the Constitution Act of 17 April 1982

amendments: proposed by either house of Parliament or by the provincial legislative assemblies; there are 5 methods for passage though most require approval by both houses of Parliament, approval of at least two thirds of the provincial legislative assemblies and assent and formalization as a proclamation by the governor general in council; the most restrictive method is reserved for amendments affecting fundamental sections of the constitution, such as the office of the monarch or the governor general, and the constitutional amendment procedures, which require unanimous approval by both houses and by all the provincial assemblies, and assent of the governor general in council; amended 11 times, last in 2011 (Fair Representation Act, 2011)

Legal system

common law system except in Quebec, where civil law based on the French civil code prevails

International law organization participation

accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Citizenship

citizenship by birth: yes

citizenship by descent only: yes

dual citizenship recognized: yes

residency requirement for naturalization: minimum of 3 of last 5 years resident in Canada

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: King CHARLES III (since 8 September 2022); represented by Governor General Mary SIMON (since 6 July 2021)

head of government: Prime Minister Justin Pierre James TRUDEAU (since 4 November 2015)

cabinet: Federal Ministry chosen by the prime minister usually from among members of his/her own party sitting in Parliament

elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch on the advice of the prime minister for a 5-year term; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition in the House of Commons generally designated prime minister by the governor general

note: the governor general position is largely ceremonial

Legislative branch

description: bicameral Parliament or Parlement consists of:
Senate or Senat (105 seats; members appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister and can serve until age 75)
House of Commons or Chambre des Communes (338 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote with terms up to 4 years)

elections: Senate - last appointed in July 2021
House of Commons - last held on 20 September 2021 (next to be held on or before 20 October 2025)

election results: Senate - composition - men 43, women 54, percentage women 55.7% (8 seats are vacant)

House of Commons - percent of vote by party - CPC 33.7%, Liberal Party 32.6%, NDP 17.8%, Bloc Quebecois 7.7%, Greens 2.3%, other 5.9%; seats by party - Liberal Party 159, CPC 119, NDP 25, Bloc Quebecois 32, Greens 2, independent 1; composition - men 234, women 102; percentage women 30.4%; total Parliament percentage women 35.2%

Judicial branch

highest court(s): Supreme Court of Canada (consists of the chief justice and 8 judges); note - in 1949, Canada abolished all appeals beyond its Supreme Court, which prior to that time, were heard by the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (in London)

judge selection and term of office: chief justice and judges appointed by the prime minister in council; all judges appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 75

subordinate courts: federal level: Federal Court of Appeal; Federal Court; Tax Court; federal administrative tribunals; Courts Martial; provincial/territorial level: provincial superior, appeals, first instance, and specialized courts; note - in 1999, the Nunavut Court - a circuit court with the power of a provincial superior court, as well as a territorial court - was established to serve isolated settlements

Political parties and leaders

Bloc Quebecois [Yves-Francois BLANCHET]
Conservative Party of Canada or CPC [Pierre POILIEVRE]
Green Party [Elizabeth MAY]
Liberal Party [Justin TRUDEAU]
New Democratic Party or NDP [Jagmeet SINGH]
People's Party of Canada [Maxime BERNIER]

International organization participation

ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), APEC, Arctic Council, ARF, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, C, CD, CDB, CE (observer), EAPC, EBRD, EITI (implementing country), FAO, FATF, G-7, G-8, G-10, G-20, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINUSTAH, MONUSCO, NAFTA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS, OECD, OIF, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, PIF (partner), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNMISS, UNRWA, UNTSO, UPU, USMCA, Wassenaar Arrangement, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Kirsten HILLMAN (since 17 July 2020)

chancery: 501 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001

telephone: [1] (844) 880-6519

FAX: [1] (202) 682-7738

email address and website:
ccs.scc@international.gc.ca

https://www.international.gc.ca/country-pays/us-eu/washington.aspx?lang=eng

consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, San Francisco, Seattle

trade office(s): Houston, Palo Alto (CA), San Diego; note - there are trade offices in the Consulates General

Diplomatic representation from the US

chief of mission: Ambassador David L. COHEN (since December 2021)

embassy: 490 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, Ontario K1N 1G8

mailing address: 5480 Ottawa Place, Washington DC  20521-5480

telephone: [1] (613) 238-5335

FAX: [1] (613) 241-7845

email address and website:
OttawaNIV@state.gov

https://ca.usembassy.gov/

consulate(s) general: Calgary, Halifax, Montreal, Quebec City, Toronto, Vancouver

consulate(s): Winnipeg

Flag description

two vertical bands of red (hoist and fly side, half width) with white square between them; an 11-pointed red maple leaf is centered in the white square; the maple leaf has long been a Canadian symbol

National symbol(s)

maple leaf, beaver; national colors: red, white

National anthem

name: "O Canada"

lyrics/music: Adolphe-Basile ROUTHIER [French], Robert Stanley WEIR [English]/Calixa LAVALLEE

note: adopted 1980; originally written in 1880, "O Canada" served as an unofficial anthem many years before its official adoption; the anthem has French and English versions whose lyrics differ; as a Commonwealth realm, in addition to the national anthem, "God Save the King" serves as the royal anthem (see United Kingdom)

National heritage

total World Heritage Sites: 22 (10 cultural, 11 natural, 1 mixed) (2021)

selected World Heritage Site locales: L'Anse aux Meadows (c); Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks (n); Dinosaur Provincial Park (n); Historic District of Old Quebec (c); Old Town Lunenburg (c); Wood Buffalo National Park (n); Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump (c); Gros Morne National Park (n); Pimachiowin Aki (m)

Economy

Economic overview

one of the world’s leading developed economies; globally integrated commercial and financial markets; largest US trading partner; key energy, forestry, manufacturing and service industries; inflation recovering following interest rate hikes; government priorities include climate policy, immigration and affordable housing

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$1.907 trillion (2022 est.)
$1.843 trillion (2021 est.)
$1.755 trillion (2020 est.)

note: data in 2017 dollars

comparison ranking: 16

Real GDP growth rate

3.44% (2022 est.)
5.01% (2021 est.)
-5.07% (2020 est.)

note: annual GDP % growth based on constant local currency

comparison ranking: 125

Real GDP per capita

$49,000 (2022 est.)
$48,200 (2021 est.)
$46,200 (2020 est.)

note: data in 2017 dollars

comparison ranking: 35

GDP (official exchange rate)

$2.138 trillion (2022 est.)

note: data in current dollars at official exchange rate

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

6.8% (2022 est.)
3.4% (2021 est.)
0.72% (2020 est.)

note: annual % change based on consumer prices

comparison ranking: 107

Credit ratings

Fitch rating: AA+ (2020)

Moody's rating: Aaa (2002)

Standard & Poors rating: AAA (2002)

note: The year refers to the year in which the current credit rating was first obtained.

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 1.6% (2017 est.)

industry: 28.2% (2017 est.)

services: 70.2% (2017 est.)

comparison rankings: services 68; industry 93; agriculture 187

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 57.8% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 20.8% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 23% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 0.7% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 30.9% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -33.2% (2017 est.)

Agricultural products

wheat, rapeseed, maize, barley, milk, soybeans, potatoes, oats, peas, lentils (2022)

note: top ten agricultural products based on tonnage

Industries

transportation equipment, chemicals, processed and unprocessed minerals, food products, wood and paper products, fish products, petroleum, natural gas

Industrial production growth rate

3.21% (2022 est.)

note: annual % change in industrial value added based on constant local currency

comparison ranking: 110

Labor force

21.363 million (2022 est.)

note: number of people ages 15 or older who are employed or seeking work

comparison ranking: 32

Unemployment rate

5.28% (2022 est.)
7.53% (2021 est.)
9.66% (2020 est.)

note: % of labor force seeking employment

comparison ranking: 105

Youth unemployment rate (ages 15-24)

total: 14% (2021 est.)

male: 15%

female: 13.1%

comparison ranking: total 124

Population below poverty line

9.4% (2008 est.)

note: this figure is the Low Income Cut-Off, a calculation that results in higher figures than found in many comparable economies; Canada does not have an official poverty line

Gini Index coefficient - distribution of family income

31.7 (2019 est.)

note: index (0-100) of income distribution; higher values represent greater inequality

comparison ranking: 137

Average household expenditures

on food: 10% of household expenditures (2021 est.)

on alcohol and tobacco: 4.1% of household expenditures (2021 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 2.9%

highest 10%: 24.4% (2019 est.)

note: % share of income accruing to lowest and highest 10% of population

Remittances

0.04% of GDP (2022 est.)
0.04% of GDP (2021 est.)
0.05% of GDP (2020 est.)

note: personal transfers and compensation between resident and non-resident individuals/households/entities

Budget

revenues: $686.718 billion (2020 est.)

expenditures: $861.955 billion (2020 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-1% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

comparison ranking: 76

Public debt

61.42% of GDP (2022 est.)
71.07% of GDP (2021 est.)
74.55% of GDP (2020 est.)

note: central government debt as a % of GDP

comparison ranking: 76

Taxes and other revenues

12.83% (of GDP) (2022 est.)

note: central government tax revenue as a % of GDP

comparison ranking: 163

Current account balance

-$6.654 billion (2022 est.)
-$5.448 billion (2021 est.)
-$35.373 billion (2020 est.)

note: balance of payments - net trade and primary/secondary income in current dollars

comparison ranking: 182

Exports

$722.831 billion (2022 est.)
$618.761 billion (2021 est.)
$490.107 billion (2020 est.)

note: balance of payments - exports of goods and services in current dollars

comparison ranking: 13

Exports - partners

US 75%, China 4%, Japan 2%, UK 2%, Mexico 1% (2022)

note: top five export partners based on percentage share of exports

Exports - commodities

crude petroleum, cars, natural gas, refined petroleum, gold (2022)

note: top five export commodities based on value in dollars

Imports

$719.339 billion (2022 est.)
$619.639 billion (2021 est.)
$526.936 billion (2020 est.)

note: balance of payments - imports of goods and services in current dollars

comparison ranking: 11

Imports - partners

US 56%, China 11%, Mexico 4%, Germany 3%, Japan 2% (2022)

note: top five import partners based on percentage share of imports

Imports - commodities

cars, refined petroleum, vehicle parts/accessories, trucks, crude petroleum (2022)

note: top five import commodities based on value in dollars

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$106.952 billion (2022 est.)
$106.615 billion (2021 est.)
$90.428 billion (2020 est.)

note: holdings of gold (year-end prices)/foreign exchange/special drawing rights in current dollars

comparison ranking: 28

Debt - external

$2,124,887,000,000 (2019 est.)
$1,949,796,000,000 (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 12

Exchange rates

Canadian dollars (CAD) per US dollar -

Exchange rates:
1.302 (2022 est.)
1.254 (2021 est.)
1.341 (2020 est.)
1.327 (2019 est.)
1.296 (2018 est.)

Energy

Electricity access

electrification - total population: 100% (2022 est.)

Electricity

installed generating capacity: 158.973 million kW (2022 est.)

consumption: 553.261 billion kWh (2022 est.)

exports: 65.225 billion kWh (2022 est.)

imports: 14.116 billion kWh (2022 est.)

transmission/distribution losses: 33.626 billion kWh (2022 est.)

comparison rankings: transmission/distribution losses 199; imports 18; exports 2; consumption 8; installed generating capacity 8

Electricity generation sources

fossil fuels: 17.2% of total installed capacity (2022 est.)

nuclear: 12.9% of total installed capacity (2022 est.)

solar: 0.9% of total installed capacity (2022 est.)

wind: 6% of total installed capacity (2022 est.)

hydroelectricity: 61.5% of total installed capacity (2022 est.)

biomass and waste: 1.5% of total installed capacity (2022 est.)

Nuclear energy

Number of operational nuclear reactors: 19 (2023)

Net capacity of operational nuclear reactors: 13.7GW (2023 est.)

Percent of total electricity production: 13.7% (2023 est.)

Number of nuclear reactors permanently shut down: 6 (2023)

Coal

production: 43.024 million metric tons (2022 est.)

consumption: 17.138 million metric tons (2022 est.)

exports: 29.114 million metric tons (2022 est.)

imports: 6.444 million metric tons (2022 est.)

proven reserves: 6.582 billion metric tons (2022 est.)

Petroleum

total petroleum production: 5.692 million bbl/day (2023 est.)

refined petroleum consumption: 2.454 million bbl/day (2023 est.)

crude oil estimated reserves: 170.3 billion barrels (2021 est.)

Natural gas

production: 187.686 billion cubic meters (2022 est.)

consumption: 130.316 billion cubic meters (2022 est.)

exports: 84.928 billion cubic meters (2022 est.)

imports: 27.481 billion cubic meters (2022 est.)

proven reserves: 2.067 trillion cubic meters (2021 est.)

Carbon dioxide emissions

572.82 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2022 est.)

from coal and metallurgical coke: 25.74 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2022 est.)

from petroleum and other liquids: 290.996 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2022 est.)

from consumed natural gas: 256.084 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2022 est.)

comparison ranking: total emissions 11

Energy consumption per capita

315.581 million Btu/person (2022 est.)

comparison ranking: 7

Communications

Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 11.312 million (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 29 (2022 est.)

comparison ranking: total subscriptions 16

Telephones - mobile cellular

total subscriptions: 35.082 million (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 91 (2022 est.)

comparison ranking: total subscriptions 44

Telecommunication systems

general assessment: the Canadian telecom market continues to show steady development as operators invest in network upgrades; much of the investment among telcos has been channeled into LTE infrastructure to capitalize on consumer demand for mobile data services, while there has also been further investment in 5G; investment programs have also been supported by regulatory efforts to ensure that operators have spectrum available to develop 5G services; an investment in fixed-line infrastructure, focused on FttP and, among cable broadband providers; government policy has encouraged the extension of broadband to rural and regional areas, with the result that services are almost universally available and the emphasis now is on improving service speeds to enable the entire population to benefit from the digital economy and society; cable broadband is the principal access platform, followed by DSL; the mobile rate remains comparatively low by international standards; Canadians have provided for LTE and LTE-A infrastructure; despite topographical challenges and the remoteness of many areas, the major players effectively offer 99% population coverage with LTE; operators now provide up to 70% population coverage with 5G (2024)

domestic: Nearly 29 per 100 fixed-line and 91 per 100 mobile-cellular teledensity (2022)

international: country code - 1; landing points for the Nunavut Undersea Fiber Optic Network System, Greenland Connect, Persona, GTT Atlantic, and Express, KetchCan 1 Submarine Fiber Cable system, St Pierre and Miquelon Cable submarine cables providing links to the US and Europe; satellite earth stations - 7 (5 Intelsat - 4 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Pacific Ocean, and 2 Intersputnik - Atlantic Ocean region) (2019)

Broadcast media

2 public TV broadcasting networks, 1 in English and 1 in French, each with a large number of network affiliates; several private-commercial networks also with multiple network affiliates; overall, about 150 TV stations; multi-channel satellite and cable systems provide access to a wide range of stations including US stations; mix of public and commercial radio broadcasters with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), the public radio broadcaster, operating 4 radio networks, Radio Canada International, and radio services to indigenous populations in the north; roughly 1,119 licensed radio stations (2016)

Internet users

total: 35.34 million (2021 est.)

percent of population: 93% (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: total 28

Broadband - fixed subscriptions

total: 15,825,813 (2020 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 42 (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: total 16

Transportation

National air transport system

number of registered air carriers: 51 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 879

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 89.38 million (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 3,434,070,000 (2018) mt-km

Airports

1,425 (2024)

comparison ranking: 5

Heliports

481 (2024)

Pipelines

840,000 km oil and gas (2020)

Railways

total: 49,422 km (2021) note: 129 km electrified (2021)

standard gauge: 49,422 km (2021) 1.435-m gauge

comparison ranking: total 5

Roadways

total: 1,042,300 km

paved: 415,600 km (includes 17,000 km of expressways)

unpaved: 626,700 km (2011)

comparison ranking: total 8

Waterways

636 km (2011) (Saint Lawrence Seaway of 3,769 km, including the Saint Lawrence River of 3,058 km, shared with United States)

comparison ranking: 85

Merchant marine

total: 716 (2023)

by type: bulk carrier 22, container ship 1, general cargo 78, oil tanker 15, other 600

comparison ranking: total 32

Ports

total ports: 284 (2024)

large: 4

medium: 14

small: 58

very small: 149

size unknown: 59

ports with oil terminals: 59

key ports: Argentia, Canaport (St. John), Halifax, Hamilton, Montreal, New Westminster, Pond Inlet, Prince Rupert, Quebec, Sept Iles, St. John, Sydney, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Trois Rivieres, Vancouver, Victoria Harbor, Windsor

Military and Security

Military and security forces

Canadian Forces: Canadian Army, Royal Canadian Navy, Royal Canadian Air Force; Department of Fisheries and Oceans: Coast Guard (2024)

note 1: the CAF is comprised of both a Regular Force and a Reserve Force; the Reserve Force is part of all three services (Army, Navy, and Air Force) and is considered an integral component of the CAF; reservists are primarily part-time service positions; they may volunteer for full-time employment or deployment on operations; they typically serve one or more evenings a week and/or during weekends at locations close to home; the Reserve Force is comprised of the Primary Reserve, Canadian Rangers, Cadet Organizations Administration and Training Service, and the Supplementary Reserve; the Canadian Rangers are part of the Army Reserve Force and provide a limited presence in Canada's northern, coastal, and isolated areas for sovereignty, public safety, and surveillance roles 

note 2: the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP or "Mounties") are under the Department of Public Safety; only Ontario, Quebec, and Newfoundland and Labrador have provincial police forces, but the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary contracts policing in regions of the province to the RCMP; the RCMP and municipal forces provide coverage for other provinces and territories; some Indigenous reserves provide Indigenous policing; provincial and municipal police report to their respective provincial authorities

Military expenditures

1.4% of GDP (2024)
1.3% of GDP (2023)
1.2% of GDP (2022)
1.3% of GDP (2021)
1.4% of GDP (2020)

comparison ranking: 98

Military and security service personnel strengths

approximately 70,000 active armed forces personnel (23,000 Army; 12,000 Navy; 12,000 Air Force; 23,000 other) (2024)

note: the Army also has approximately 19,000 part-time volunteer soldiers in the Reserve Force, including about 5,500 Rangers

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the CAF's inventory is a mix of domestically produced equipment and imported weapons systems from Australia, Europe, Israel, and the US; in recent years, the leading supplier has been the US; Canada's defense industry develops, maintains, and produces a range of equipment, including aircraft, combat vehicles, naval vessels, and associated components (2023)

Military service age and obligation

17 years of age for voluntary male and female military service (with parental consent); 16 years of age for Reserve and Military College applicants; Canadian citizenship or permanent residence status required; maximum 34 years of age; service obligation 3-9 years (2023)

note 1: Canada opened up all military occupations to women in 2001; women in 2023 comprised about 16% of the CAF

note 2: the CAF offers waivers to foreign nationals applying for military service only in exceptional cases — to individuals on international military exchanges, for example, or to candidates who have specialized skills in high demand

Military deployments

the CAF has approximately 1,000 military personnel forward deployed for NATO air, land, and sea missions in the European theater, including a ground task force in Latvia; it also contributes smaller numbers of air, ground, and naval forces to a variety of other NATO and international missions (2024)

note: in 2024, Canada announced plans to have a full 2,000-person brigade deployed to Latvia by 2026

Military - note

the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) are responsible for external security; the CAF’s core missions include detecting, deterring, and defending against threats to or attacks on Canada; the military also provides assistance to civil authorities and law enforcement as needed for such missions as counterterrorism, search and rescue, and responding to natural disasters or other major emergencies; it regularly participates in bilateral and multinational training exercises with a variety of partners, including NATO (Canada is one of the original members) and the US; the CAF also contributes to international peacekeeping, stability, humanitarian, combat, and capacity building operations with the UN, NATO, and other security partners

Canada is part of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD; established 1958); NORAD is a Canada-US bi-national military command responsible for monitoring and defending North American airspace; traditionally, a CAF officer has served as the deputy commander of NORAD; Canada’s defense relationship with the US extends back to the Ogdensburg Declaration of 1940, when the two countries formally agreed on military cooperation, including the establishment of the Permanent Joint Board on Defense (PJBD), which continues to be the highest-level bilateral defense forum between Canada and the US

British troops withdrew from Canada in 1871 as part of the UK-US Treaty of Washington; following the withdrawal, the first Canadian militia, known as the Royal Canadian Regiment, was organized in 1883 to protect Canadian territory and defend British interests abroad, which it did in the South African War (1899-1902), Canada’s first overseas conflict; militia units formed the backbone of the more than 425,000 Canadian soldiers that went to Europe during World War I in what was called the Canadian Expeditionary Force; the Royal Canadian Navy was created in 1910, while the Canadian Air Force was established in 1920 and became the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1924; the Canadian Army was officially founded in 1942; a unified Canadian Armed Forces was created in 1968 (2024)

Space

Space agency/agencies

Canadian Space Agency (CSA; established 1989) (2024)

Space launch site(s)

Churchill Rocket Research Range (sounding rockets; Manitoba); constructing a private, commercial space launch site in Nova Scotia (2023)

Space program overview

has a substantial program, a national space strategy, and a long history of developing space-related technologies; designs, builds, operates, and tracks communications, remote sensing (RS), multi-mission, and scientific/testing satellites; has an astronaut program (train in the US); designs, builds, or contributes to a variety of other space-related programs, including space telescopes, planetary probes, sensors, and robotic systems (such as the Canadian-made robotic arms used on the US Space Shuttle and the International Space Station); participates in international space efforts and cooperates with a variety of foreign space agencies and commercial entities, including those of Argentina, Brazil, the European Space Agency (ESA)/EU (and their member states), India, and particularly the US; ESA Cooperating State since 1979; has a robust commercial space sector that is involved in satellite communications, optics, space exploration, navigation, and space science (2024)

note: further details about the key activities, programs, and milestones of the country’s space program, as well as government spending estimates on the space sector, appear in Appendix S

Terrorism

Terrorist group(s)

Terrorist group(s): Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham (ISIS); Hizballah

note: details about the history, aims, leadership, organization, areas of operation, tactics, targets, weapons, size, and sources of support of the group(s) appear(s) in Appendix-T

Transnational Issues

Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 22,400 (Venezuela) (refugees and migrants) (2020); 5,254 (Iran) (mid-year 2021)

stateless persons: 4,323 (2022)

Illicit drugs

transnational criminal organizations trafficked cocaine, opium, methamphetamine, other synthetic drugs, and prescription drugs (some of which transited the United States) to Canada for domestic consumption; a source of synthetic drugs (including synthetic opioids), cannabis, and MDMA trafficked to the United States;  a major source of precursor or essential chemicals used in the production of illicit narcotics