Canada Raises Immigration Targets
The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act requires the Canadian government to release its Immigration Levels Plan on or before November 1 each year. On November 1, 2022, Sean Fraser, Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, presented Canada’s 2022 Annual Report to Parliament on Immigration (Immigration Levels Plan). The Immigration Levels Plan is a projection of how many permanent residents will be admitted to Canada in a given year and sets targets for overall admissions per immigration category.
The Immigration Levels Plan outlines pathways to permanent immigration to Canada and specific targets for each, including:
- Federal and regional economic immigration programs
- Family reunification
- Refugees, protected persons and humanitarian and compassionate immigration
In 2021, Canada welcomed 405,999 permanent residents, the most immigrants in a single year in its history. In the 2022 Immigration Levels Plan, the Government of Canada significantly increased its targets and intends to welcome 465,000 permanent residents in 2023, 485,000 in 2024 and 500,000 in 2025.
Highlights of the 2022 Immigration Levels Plan include:
- a clear focus on economic growth and economic immigration, with the goal of having 60% of admissions in the economic class by 2025
- enhancing the Express Entry system to attract immigrants with the required skills and qualifications in sectors facing acute labour shortages such as, health care, manufacturing, building trades and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math)
- raising targets in regional programs to address targeted local labour market needs, through the Provincial Nominee Program, the Atlantic Immigration Program, and the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot
- increasing French speaking immigration targets by ensuring that at least 4.4% of new permanent residents outside Quebec are Francophone
- augmenting support to those facing persecution, including by expanding the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot for qualified refugees to apply for permanent residence
As Canada competes with other developed economies to attract immigrants, the Immigration Levels Plan emphasizes increased immigration to ease Canada’s labor shortage and support Canada’s aging population while encouraging immigration to remote areas of the country. This will provide foreign nationals with increased opportunities to become permanent residents of Canada while at the same time bolstering Canada’s economy as it recovers from the effects of Covid-19 pandemic.
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For a closer look at Canada’s Immigration 2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan, please consult: