South Asian Canadians refer to Canadians who were either born in or can trace their ancestry to South Asia, which includes nations such as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal. In Canadian English usage, the term ‘Asian’ alone refers to people descended from East Asia and Southeast Asia. The name South Asian Canadian is a subgroup of Asian Canadian and, according to Statistics Canada, can further be divided by nationality, such as Indo-Canadian, Bangladeshi Canadian, and Pakistani Canadian, or by ethnicities, such as Tamil Canadian and Gujarati Canadian.
As of 2016, 1,963,330 Canadians had South Asian geographical origins, constituting 5.4% of the Canadian population and 32% of Canada’s Asian Canadian community. Asian Canadian community makes them the largest visible minority group in Canada, comprising 25.6% of the visible minority population, followed by Chinese and Black Canadians. Most South Asians are in Ontario, British Columbia, and Alberta. Metropolitan areas with large communities from South Asia include Toronto (995,125), Vancouver (287,900), Vancouver’s neighboring CMA of Abbotsford – Mission (37,915), Calgary (122,515), Montréal (90,815) and Edmonton (91,595).