Emerging Tech Cities in Canada

Emerging Tech Cities in Canada

SEP 26, 2022



The era of tech domination in one region is long gone, which means that tech professionals no longer have to flock to Silicon Valley to chase their dreams. Regarding major tech centers, Canada is right up there with the best. While Canadian cities like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal are highly favoured as tech powerhouses, there are several Emerging Tech Cities in Canada.

In CBRE's 2022 Next 25 emerging tech markets in North America, Halifax ranked ninth, London, tenth and Winnipeg twelfth. These cities are seen to have made recurring appearances on the list, with London showing 99% growth in total tech employment from 2016 to 2021. Let's look at these 3 cities, along with some other emerging tech hubs in Canada.

Emerging Tech Cities in Canada

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is known for more traditional resource industries. But there's been a shift due to a significant shakeup due to a substantial retiring population and Canada's immigration policies. The province is now home to many tech startups and firms, with its capital city, Halifax, fast rising as a hot tech hub. The city ranks high for wage growth and tech diversity. This hub is tagged for a significant growth spurt following major investment in this sector.

London, Ontario

Yes, there's a London in Ontario, and Ryan Gosling was born there. But if you are not too phased about Hollywood heartthrobs, the major news is that this city has a booming tech sector. With over 300 tech companies employing about 3% of the labour force in the town, most London tech businesses specialize in digital media. Consider the BC Tech Stream if you would like to work in this region.

Winnipeg, Manitoba

With tax credits for investing in tech and money available for research and development, there are tech startups in Winnipeg, and government departments in the region have a great relationship. The result? It's now one of the fastest-growing tech hubs in the Great White North. The city is considered to be a top tech hub to be based in, with a low cost of living and decent rent range. If you don't mind bad winters, this city is for you.

Cambridge, Ontario

Gen Z techies, Cambridge, Ontario, is known for offering excellent salaries to your generation. It's a great city for newbies and is popular with startups. And if you're looking to further your tech education, the city is home to the Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning's School of Engineering and Information Technology. Consider the OINP Tech Draw if you would like to work in this region.

Calgary, Alberta

Famous for its gas and oil companies, Calgary, Alberta, is now transforming into quite the tech player, according to word on the streets. The city reportedly has the most impressive offering in terms of remuneration and is highly regarded when it comes to tech diversity. Consider the Alberta Accelerated Tech Pathway if you would like to work in this region.

New Brunswick

The Canadian province of New Brunswick has become popular with some of the world's top Information and Communications Technology (ICT) corporations. Set in an idyllic spot - right between Europe and the Americas - this province has become a central hub for the big tech guns like Xerox, IBM, Tech Mahindra, HCL Technologies, and many more. Around 2,300 people work in this occupation.

Edmonton, Alberta

Edmonton, Alberta, is another city that has become a tech leader, specializing in artificial intelligence, machine learning and innovation. It is now recognized as one of the best Canadian tech cities to settle in, with an excellent average wage and tech diversity. Check out the Alberta Accelerated Tech Pathway if you woul;d like to work in this region.

Victoria, British Columbia

Vancouver may be British Columbia's top tech hub, but the city of Victoria has a thriving tech industry. The tech sector is one of the city's largest employers, with over 880 tech companies employing over 15,000 people. With this strong talent pool and lower costs, Victoria is a tech city to watch. Consider the BC Tech Stream if you would like to work in this region.

Are You Ready to Join the Canadian Tech Workforce?

With so many technology hubs, Canada is a haven for tech professionals. If you would like to live and work in the Great White North, do some research to see which region would be best for your particular skills. Also consider things like the weather and location before you apply. If you need some help deciding which of these cities best suit your past experience and expertise, chat to one of our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants(RCIC)for some guidance.


What are the Options for Tech Workers Wanting to Move to Canada?

Tech employers who hire foreign talent have several temporary work permit options available to them. These programs allow them to hire the professionals needed for their businesses to function quickly.

Global Talent Stream

The Global Talent Stream (GTS) is popular with the technology sector and aims for a speedy processing time of two weeks, as soon as a candidate submits a final application. This serves as a temporary work permit and could be a bridge to those hoping to obtain permanent residency. GTS is part of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP). Before appointing a skilled foreign worker in a tech job in Canada, an employer must get a neutral or positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) to qualify.


An employer hiring tech talent from North America could qualify for the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), which is also a temporary work permit. This agreement is divided into two categories relevant to tech workers.

  • Professionals: 63 occupations are eligible for CUSMA via the professional's category. Prominent tech occupations such as systems analysts and software developers may qualify.
  • Intra-Company transfers (ICTs): ICTs come into play when employees of multinational companies are transferred to a department in Canada.

NOTE: CUSMA is not a pathway to permanent residency in Canada. If you wish to gain Canadian permanent residency with CUSMA you may be able to apply via the Canadian experience class, an Express entry program that requires applicants to live and work in Canada for at least one year, but you have to work in Canada for at least a year.

What are the Pathways to Canada?

Instead of going the temporary permit route, you may want to become a permanent resident of Canada. The most common option for skilled tech workers who want to move to Canada to do this is via the Express Entry system or a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).

As a tech worker, you could qualify for one of the below Canada's provincial streams:

  • BC Tech Stream
  • OINP Tech Draw
  • Saskatchewan Tech Talent Pathway
  • Alberta Accelerated Tech Pathway

I want to get a tech degree from a Canadian University. What are my options?

Canada is home to some of the most prestigious universities in the world. Look at the top universities in the country and start planning your world-class Canadian education.