The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) processed around 4.8 million applications for immigration in 2022. This is a record and almost double the number of applications processed in 2021, which was 2.5 million. At the same time, by the end of 2022, IRCC will have welcomed 431000 new permanent residents.
Canada’s immigration minister Sean Fraser has said that the government could reduce backlogs in applications by nearly half a million. “Our actions are ensuring that we can continue to welcome and support newcomers who come to Canada to work, study, visit, or settle here. It is through the dedication and hard work of those who administer our immigration system, and our willingness to modernize and adapt, that we are able to uphold Canada’s reputation as a welcoming and inclusive country.”
IRCC revealed that owing to its efforts to modernise the immigration services, they could process all new spousal sponsorship applications within the pre-pandemic service standard of 12 months as well as Express Entry applications within six months.
Canada set to welcome more immigrants
Over the past year, Canada initiated several measures to increase the number of immigrants arriving to Canada. One such step was extended work permits for spouses and working age dependents of temporary workers. Canada has also lifted 20 hours-per-week work cap for international students. Besides, Canada made the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program and Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot permanent last year.
As per the Immigration Levels Plan for 2023-25, the country will be admitting more than 500000 new permanent residents until 2025. Canada has raised the immigration target for the coming years owing to the severe labour shortage crisis the country is facing currently. It is predicted that up to nine million Canadians will reach retirement age by 2030. Canada’s population is so low that they won’t have enough workers to replace these retiring workers. So Canada needs a high number of immigrants to replace these workers.