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Nunavut Population – Historic, Growth Rate and Present

Learn about the region of Nunavut which is the 5th largest inter-country land area in the world.

Nunavut is the largest and it’s the most northern territory in Canada. This territory constitutes the mainland and a wide array of scattered islands. In addition, the region of Nunavut is the 5th largest inter-country land area in the world.

Furthermore, Nunavut population is just about 33,000 inhabitants, it is therefore very sparsely populated, with a population density of 0.02 people/km2, that is; 0.052ms-2.

This stat however, shows an of 8.3% from the 2006 census; which indicates an increase above the average increase across Canada.

Nonetheless, the growth rate has slowed down in recent times with an increase of 0.8% from 2013 to 2014 accounting for the total population as of today to 36,408.

Open table for Nunavut Population Recent History
Date Population
2020 Q4 39,285
2020 Q3 39,353
2020 Q2 38,966
2020 Q1 38,726
2019 Q4 38,637

Table of Contents

Nunavut Population Density

The total enumerated population of Nunavut in 2011 was 31,906, representing a change of 8.3% from 2006 compare to the national average of 5.9%.

Although the land area of Nunavut is 1,877,787.62/km2, it however, only has a population density of 0.0 persons/ms2 compare to the total Canadian land area of 8,965,121.42/km2 having a population density of 3.7 persons/km2.

Consequently, there were 8,661 private dwellings in total, which were occupied by residents in Nunavut in 2011.

Therefore, indicating an increase of 10.3% of the number of private dwellings occupied by residents from 2006.

However, for Canada, the total number of private dwellings occupied by residents increased by 7.1%.

Open table for Nunavut Population and Language Demography
Selected language Mother tongue Language spoken most often at home
Number % Number %
Total 31,765 100.0 31,765 100.0
English 8,925 28.1 14,440 45.5
French 435 1.4 250 0.8
Non-official language 22,070 69.5 16,820 53.0
Aboriginal language 21,585 68.0 16,645 52.4
Non-Aboriginal language 490 1.5 180 0.6
Multiple responses 335 1.1 255 0.8

Nunavut Demographics

The larger towns in Nunavut are quite very cosmopolitan; nevertheless, the entire territory is majorly occupied by people with an Inuit ethnic background, this majority represents an 83.6% of inhabitants in Iqaluit as confirmed in the most recent census. Similarly, only 15% of residents here consider themselves as non-aboriginal.

Consequently, and not surprisingly, 70% of the inhabitants of Nunavut reveal that their mother tongue is Inuktitut.

Meanwhile, the second most common language is English, here, about 27% of inhabitants report English as their mother tongue.

Although, French is designated as an official language, only about 1.27% of residents said it to be their mother tongue. Strangely however, Inuktitut is not considered an official language in Nunavut.

Median Age of Nunavut Population

The province of Nunavut has the youngest average age of 24.7 years in Canada; this is particularly as a result of the high fertility rates with subsequent loss of the older population.

Furthermore, the province has the lowest average age of mothers in Canada; here the first child comes at a rate 8 times higher the national average for teenage pregnancies.

Additionally, the most prolific faith in the territory is the Anglican Church of Canada where 58% of the population reports it as their faith, with Roman Catholic in second place at 28%.

Open table for Nunavut Population Index by Gender
Broad age groups by sex Population
2011 2006 change % change
Both sexes
Total 31,905 29,470 2,435 8.3
0 to 14 10,425 10,000 425 4.3
15 to 64 20,420 18,660 1,760 9.4
65 and over 1,060 810 250 30.9
Males
Total 16,395 15,110 1,285 8.5
0 to 14 5,335 5,080 255 5.0
15 to 64 10,490 9,595 895 9.3
65 and over 565 435 130 29.9
Females
Total 15,510 14,365 1,145 8.0
0 to 14 5,090 4,925 165 3.4
15 to 64 9,930 9,065 865 9.5
65 and over 495 370 125 33.8

Nunavut Economic Growth Rate

There is quite a high unemployment rate of (13.5%) as of 2013 in Nunavut, however, this number reduced to (11.4%) in 2014 despite the fact that Nunavut boasts a youthful population.

In addition, the major economic sectors in the province are natural resources and fishery, followed by government employment. Similarly, contributing to the local economy are exports, tourism and Inuit art.

Likewise, the economy of Nunavut continues to grow; it also reported a GDP of C$1.75 billion as of 2010 which saw an increase of 11.4% from the year before. However, economic experts predict an increase of 9.2% in the nearest future.

Important Facts about Nunavut

  • The word “Nunavut” means “our land” in Inuktitut.
  • Province of Nunavut is among the least densely populated regions in the world.
  • Land of Nunavut is particularly occupied and controlled by the Inuit.
  • Nunavut territory has no paved roads that connect communities together because it is highly sparsely populated, consequently, almost all long-distance travel is done by air.
  • The province of Nunavut is the largest and also the least populated territory in Canada.
Nunavut Population: Age distributions by broad age groups and sex, 2011 Census
Age groups Both sexes Males Females
0 to 14 32.7% 32.5% 32.8%
15 to 64 64.0% 64% 64.0%
65 and over3 3.3% 3.4% 3.2%

Nunavut Population of Immigrants

In the 2016 census only a total number of 920 immigrants were counted in Nunavut, these number included about:

  • Philippines: 185 immigrant
  • 80 immigrants from the United Kingdom
  • 60 immigrants from the United States
  • Immigrants from Zimbabwe: 35
  • Immigrants from India: 30
  • Nigeria immigrants: 30
  • Pakistan Immigrant: 30

In addition, an overall number of 4,940 people relocated to Nunavut from other parts of Canada between the period 1996 and 2006.

Meanwhile, a total number of 5,615 people moved from Nunavut to other parts of Canada.

Immigrants in Nunavut Population and place of birth (2016 Census)

Immigrants in Nunavut Population and place of birth (2016 Census)

Rank Country Population # % of total immigrants
1 Philippines 185 20.1%
2 United Kingdom 80 8.7%
3 United States 60 6.5%
4 Zimbabwe 35 3.8%
5 India 30 3.3%
6 Nigeria 30 3.3%
7 Pakistan 30 3.3%
8 Jamaica 25 2.7%
9 Bangladesh 20 2.2%
10 Cameroon 20 2.2%
11 China 20 2.2%
12 Ethiopia 20 2.2%
13 Germany 20 2.2%
14 Poland 15 1.6%
15 South Africa 15 1.6%

Province of Nunavut Visible Minority Groups

Visible minority is a term that indicates an individual to be a member of a visible minority group as it is defined by the Employment Equity Act, if this is so, to what visible minority group does the individual belong.

Therefore, the Employment Equity Act defines visible minority as a person, other than of Aboriginal peoples, who also are non-Caucasian in race or non-white in color.”

As a result, the visible minority population in Canada consists specifically of the following people:

  • South Asian
  • Chinese
  • Black
  • Filipino
  • Latin American
  • Arab
  • Southeast Asian
  • West Asian
  • Korean
  • Japanese
Visible minority and Aboriginal population (Canada 2016 Census)

Visible minority and Aboriginal population (Canada 2016 Census)

Population group Population % of total population
European 4,120 11.6%
Visible minority group South Asian 115 0.3%
Chinese 75 0.2%
Black 330 0.9%
Filipino 230 0.6%
Latin American 40 0.1%
Arab 40 0.1%
Southeast Asian 30 0.1%
West Asian 10 0%
Korean 10 0%
Japanese 10 0%
Visible minority, n.i.e. 20 0.1%
Multiple visible minority 10 0%
Total visible minority population 905 2.5%
Aboriginal group First Nations 190 0.5%
Métis 165 0.5%
Inuit 30,135 84.7%
Aboriginal, n.i.e. 10 0%
Multiple Aboriginal identity 55 0.2%
Total Aboriginal population 30,555 85.9%
Total population 35,580 100%

Cities in Province of Nunavut

The most populated city in Nunavut is Iqaluit, therefore, most people who inhabit Nunavut, actually are residents of the capital city of Iqaluit. Iqaluit is home to around 7,000 inhabitants.

Likewise, the city of Iqaluit is the center of the entire territory, it is however, still relatively small with a very unique aura separate from the rest of Canada.

In addition, it has cosmopolitan scenery. The city also displays a wonderful and unique cultural and artistic life.

Furthermore, cost of living in Iqaluit is quite high, there is also an interesting fact that you will not find alcohol for sale here, consequently, permits must be obtained to fly it in for personal consumption.

Similarly, most perishable goods are also flown in from the mainland; therefore, many items are subject to increase in cost as a result of this.

Open Table to view list of municipalities in Nunavut

List of municipalities in Nunavut

Name Status 2016 Census of Population
Population (2016) Population (2011) Change Land area (km²) Population density
Arctic Bay Hamlet 868 823 +5.5% 247.50 3.5/km2
Arviat Hamlet 2,657 2,318 +14.6% 132.07 20.1/km2
Baker Lake Hamlet 2,069 1,872 +10.5% 182.22 11.4/km2
Cambridge Bay Hamlet 1,766 1,608 +9.8% 202.35 8.7/km2
Chesterfield Inlet Hamlet 437 313 +39.6% 141.10 3.1/km2
Clyde River Hamlet 1,053 934 +12.7% 106.55 9.9/km2
Coral Harbour Hamlet 891 834 +6.8% 137.91 6.5/km2
Gjoa Haven Hamlet 1,324 1,279 +3.5% 28.47 46.5/km2
Grise Fiord Hamlet 129 130 −0.8% 332.70 0.4/km2
Igloolik Hamlet 1,744 1,454 +19.9% 103.01 16.9/km2
Iqaluit City 7,740 6,699 +15.5% 52.50 147.4/km2
Kimmirut Hamlet 389 455 −14.5% 2.27 171.4/km2
Kinngait Hamlet 1,441 1,363 +5.7% 9.74 147.9/km2
Kugaaruk Hamlet 933 771 +21.0% 4.97 187.7/km2
Kugluktuk Hamlet 1,491 1,450 +2.8% 549.65 2.7/km2
Naujaat Hamlet 1,082 945 +14.5% 424.27 2.6/km2
Pangnirtung Hamlet 1,481 1,425 +3.9% 7.77 190.6/km2
Pond Inlet Hamlet 1,617 1,549 +4.4% 173.36 9.3/km2
Qikiqtarjuaq Hamlet 598 520 +15.0% 130.71 4.6/km2
Rankin Inlet Hamlet 2,842 2,577 +10.3% 20.24 140.4/km2
Resolute Hamlet 198 214 −7.5% 116.89 1.7/km2
Sanikiluaq Hamlet 882 812 +8.6% 114.94 7.7/km2
Sanirajak Hamlet 848 736 +15.2% 16.82 50.4/km2
Taloyoak Hamlet 1,029 899 +14.5% 37.65 27.3/km2
Whale Cove Hamlet 435 407 +6.9% 283.66 1.5/km2
Total municipalities 35,944 32,387 +11.0% 3,559.32 10.1/km2
Territory of Nunavut 35,944 32,397 +10.9% 1,877,778.53 0.02/km2

Higher Education in Nunavut

Currently, there are no universities in Nunavut. However, the famous Nunavut Arctic College serves as the only institution of higher learning in the province.

Similarly, the institution offers a limited number of degrees in collaboration with Dalhousie University. where it offers the Nunavut Nursing Program.

Likewise with University Regina where it undertakes the Nunavut Teacher Education. In the same vein, with the University of Prince Edward Island for its Master of Education in Leadership and Learning program, as well as its former Akitsiraq Law Program.

Furthermore, Nunavuts are also offered training in both very elementary academic and vocational studies.

Consequently, because of the distance and lack of access roads between communities, the Arctic college attempts to ensure that adult education must compulsorily be delivered in all communities, with the intension also that trainings be customized to address individual and community needs

Nunavut Population Covid 19 Vaccination

Nunavut COVID-19 vaccination program have administered in every region a total of 63,210 doses COVID-19 vaccines to its residents.

Currently, 76.2% of doses delivered to Nunavut have been administered. However, vaccines administered includes; the Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines.

Additionally, these vaccines require two doses to be administered several weeks apart, for full efficiency.

Consequently, the total number of doses administered is almost commensurate to the total adult population, also the number of people in general who have been fully vaccinated continue to increase.

Therefore, as of today, over 25,663 people in Nunavut have been administered at least one dose of an approved COVID-19 vaccine.

Meanwhile, 22,485 people in Nunavut have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, after receiving the required two doses.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is origin of the aborigines of Nunavut?

The ancient Nunavut descendants of Paleo-Eskimo people are the Pre-Dorset and Dorset cultures.

The Dorset race were the last major Paleo-Eskimo culture to live in the Arctic prior to the east migration from current Alaska of the Thule, who are the direct ancestors of the Inuit.