As an aid to compensate for the deficit in newcomers caused by COVID-19 and to ensure Canada has the workers it needs to fill crucial labor market gaps and remain competitive on the global stage, the Immigration Refugees Citizenship Canada (IRCC) intends on welcoming 431 645 new permanent residents in 2022, as per the new Immigration Level Plan 2022 – 2024.
The Plan further targets an overall of more than 1.3 million between 2022 and 2024 at a rate of about one percent per year of Canada’s population.In 2023, the target goal for permanent residents will increase to 447 055 and then by an additional 15 410 in 2024.
During the unveiling of the new plan, on February 14 the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship said: “Immigration has helped shape Canada into the country it is today. From farming and fishing to manufacturing, healthcare and the transportation sector, Canada relies on immigrants. We are focused on economic recovery, and immigration is the key to getting there. Setting bold new immigration targets, as outlined in the 2022-2024 Levels Plan, will further help bring the immeasurable contribution of immigrants to our communities and across all sectors of the economy.”
Highlights of the plan include:
- overall admissions amounting to 1.14% of the Canadian population by 2024.
- a long-term focus on economic growth, with nearly 60% of admissions in the Economic Class.
- help for vulnerable populations, like the special measures for granting permanent residence to refugee claimants working in health care during the pandemic.
- support for global crises by providing a safe haven through humanitarian immigration to those facing persecution.
- talent retention of those already in Canada by granting permanent status to temporary residents accepted through the time limited pathways for essential workers launched in spring 2021.
Through the modernize Canada’s immigration system, which was launched in January 2022, the Plan also worked to solve critical difficulties faced by the immigration department, such as the high level of backlog applications. Through predictable processing timeframes, the system intends to improve client experience and modernize Canada’s immigration system; which currently has a backlog of over 1.8 million persons awaiting decisions. Citizenship applications, temporary foreign employees, families, students, refugees, and visitors all fall under this category. As of December 2021, the Express Entry backlog totaled at 119,000 applicants.
This strategy helps to attract and retain newcomers in areas facing severe economic, labor, and demographic challenges. Streams such as the Atlantic Immigration Program are specifically aimed at these geographical areas, which include Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Newfoundland and Labrador. It will also promote Francophone immigration outside of Quebec, as well as the successful integration of French-speaking newcomers and the strengthening of Francophone communities across the country. IRCC aims to reach 4.4 percent of French-speaking immigrants living outside of Quebec by 2023 as part of our Francophone Immigration Strategy.
Canada’s immigration system is guided by the Immigration Levels Plan. It lays forth the number of immigrants that Canada plans to accept through its various federal, provincial, and territorial schemes.