Canada immigration on course to achieve its target despite the pandemic

By Scarlett Wilson [Published 14 May, 2021 | 04:14 AM]
Canada immigration on course to achieve its target despite the pandemic

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) invited 22,425 new immigrants for permanent residency in March 2021.

According to the latest data released by IRCC earlier this week shows the country welcomed more than 70,000 new immigrants in the first quarter of this year. That figure for the first quarter of 2021 is well above the 30,000 to 40,000 newcomers Canada had received each quarter since the start of the pandemic.

Canada has announced the most ambitious immigration plan in its history. At the end of October 2020, the Minister of the Ministry, Marco Mendicino, announced the 2021-2023 immigration levels plan.

Canada has targeted to admit 401,000 new immigrants in 2021, which is equal to the immigration record set in 1913. It hopes to welcome even more newcomers over the next two years.

Only 184,000 new immigrants were invited in 2020 mainly due to the pandemic disruptions, which was well below the previous yearís number of immigration invited which was 341,000 immigrants.

Due to the coronavirus travel restrictions, Canada has prioritized the transition of temporary workers to permanent residents.

The main way IRCC does this is by running Express Entry draws that target people currently in Canada. Express Entry is Canada's primary way of welcoming economy class immigrants. The economy class represents nearly 60% of new immigrants that Canada admits each year.

The Express Entry draws targeted Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) and Canadian Experience Class (CEC) applicants. The CEC made up the vast majority of successful Express Entry applicants in 2021.

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On February 13, IRCC invited 27,332 CEC applicants to apply for permanent residence, which was nearly six times higher than the previous Express Entry draw record.

In addition, IRCC last week launched six new permanent residency streams that aim to transfer some 90,000 essential workers and international graduates to permanent residency. The international stream of English-speaking graduates reached their quota of 40,000 applicants in just over 24 hours.

Record-breaking Express Entry draws and these six new streams will give IRCC a significant tailwind through the third and fourth quarters of 2021 that will support its goal of 401,000 people.

Many of the people invited to Canada under Express Entry last year and in the first semester of this year will be granted permanent resident status by the end of this year. In addition, IRCC recently declared its intention to recruit at least 40,000 essential workers and graduates by the end of the year.

In addition, Canadian immigration has a significant seasonal component. Landings of permanent residence tend to increase during the warmer months of spring and summer. Despite travel restrictions, those authorized to immigrate to Canada may do so in the coming months when the weather is more favorable.

IRCC's quick start to this year, combined with the aforementioned favorable winds, has positioned Canada to meet its target of 401,000 this year.

Tags: coronavirus, covid, express entry, immigration levels plan, IRCC, permanent residence, PNP, study, work, work permits

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