The Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, tabled the 2021‒2023 Immigration Levels Plan on Friday, which sets out a path for responsible increases to immigration targets to help the Canadian economy recover from COVID-19, drive future growth and create jobs for middle class Canadians.
As per the plan, the Canadian government has unveiled its plan to welcome in more than 1.2 million immigrants over the next three years. Canada will aim to welcome 401,000 immigrants in 2021, 411,000 in 2022, and 421,000 in 2023.
According to a government news release, the pandemic has highlighted the contribution of immigrants to the well-being of Canadian communities and across all sectors of the economy. The statement goes on to add, “the health-care system relies on immigrants to keep Canadians safe and healthy. Other industries, such as information technology companies and our farmers and producers, also rely on the talent of newcomers to maintain supply chains, expand their businesses and, in turn, create more jobs for Canadians.”
Highlights of the plan include:
- an increase in admissions over the 3 years of the plan to make up the shortfall in 2020
- a focus on economic growth, with about 60% of admissions to come from the Economic Class
- a continued focus on innovative and community-driven approaches to address diverse labour and demographic needs across the country
- a renewed commitment to capacity-building and digital transformation in Canada’s immigration system, to support operations and mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 on the processing of applications
- additional points for French-speaking candidates under Express Entry, to promote the growth of Francophone communities outside of Quebec
- a commitment to admit up to 500 refugees over the next 2 years through the Economic Mobility Pathways Project, an innovative approach that helps qualified refugees apply for permanent residence through existing economic immigration pathways
- a pathway to permanent residency for eligible asylum claimants who were working on the front lines of the pandemic between March 13 and August 14, 2020, providing direct care to patients in health-care institutions
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