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Toronto (pronounced /təˈrɒntoʊ/, colloquially /ˈtrɒnoʊ/ or /təˈrɒnoʊ/) is the provincial capital of Ontario, and the largest city in Canada. It is located in Southern Ontario on the northwestern shore of Lake Ontario. With over 2.5 million residents, it is the seventh most populous municipality in North America. Toronto is at the heart of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), and is part of a densely populated region in Southern Ontario known as the Golden Horseshoe, which is home to over 8.1 million residents—approximately 25% of Canada's population.[4][5][6] The census metropolitan area (CMA) had a population of 5,113,149,[2] and the Greater Toronto Area had a population of 5,555,912 in the 2006 Census.[5]

As Canada's economic capital, Toronto is considered an alpha world city by the Globalization and World Cities (GaWC) study group[7] and is one of the top financial centres in the world.[8][9] Toronto's leading economic sectors include finance, business services, telecommunications, aerospace, transportation, media, arts, film, television production, publishing, software production, medical research, education, tourism, and sports industries.[10][11] The city is also a major centre of higher education and research, home to many colleges and universities, including the University of Toronto, consistently ranked as one of the top universities in the world and highest-ranked in Canada. The Toronto Stock Exchange, the world's eighth largest in terms of market value, is headquartered in the city, along with the most Canadian corporate headquarters of a major Canadian city.

Toronto's population is cosmopolitan and international,[12] reflecting its role as an important destination for immigrants to Canada.[13] Toronto is one of the world's most diverse cities by percentage of non-native-born residents, as about 49% of the population were born outside Canada.[12][13][14] As a result, the city was recognized by UNESCO as the most ethnically-diverse city in the world.[15][16] Toronto is consistently rated as one of the world's most livable cities by the Economist Intelligence Unit[17] and the Mercer Quality of Living Survey.[18] In addition, Toronto was ranked as the most expensive Canadian city in which to live in 2006.[19] Residents of Toronto are called Torontonians.

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