The announcement that Canada has surpassed its record-breaking objective for admissions of permanent residents in 2022 was met with celebrations from coast to coast. The country accepted more than 437,000 immigrants in 2022, the biggest amount since Confederation, according to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
Minister of Immigration Sean Fraser welcomed the accomplishment and said,
“Today marks an important milestone for Canada, setting a new record for newcomers welcomed in a single year. It is a testament to the strength and resilience of our country and its people. Newcomers play an essential role in filling labor shortages, bringing new perspectives and talents to our communities, and enriching our society as a whole that helps us build a more prosperous future for all Canadians.”
The record-breaking figures are not shocking news because Canada has recently aimed to increase its immigration acceptance targets. In the Immigration Levels Plan 2023–2025, which was published in November, the Minister outlined the objective. By 2025, 500,000 more permanent residents are to be added annually. Additionally, the government provided $50 million to IRCC in the Fall Economic Statement for 2022–2023 to address the ongoing backlog of applications, which, as of November 30, 2022, totaled 1.09 million across all business lines. With the support of this investment, the IRCC was able to update its procedures, process more applications, and raise service levels.
The Need for Immigration in Canada
Immigration is a major factor in Canada’s population increase. Due to its ageing workforce, the country currently has nearly one million job openings and a skilled labour shortage. Since Canada has one of the lowest birth rates in the world—1.4 children per woman—immigrants are responsible for 75% of the country’s population growth, according to the census from 2021.
Given that nine million Canadians are anticipated to reach the retirement age of 65 by 2030, immigration is a significant contributor to Canada’s economic growth and stability. Accordingly, the worker-to-retiree ratio, which was 7 to 1 50 years ago, will radically change to 2 to 1 by 2035. Immigrants are expected to make up 36% of Canada’s population in the near future, making them essential to the growth and success of the nation.
Plan for Immigration Levels from 2023 to 2025
The yearly Immigration Levels Plan specifies Canada’s admission goals. Prior to the introduction of the 2023–2025 plan, the plan for 2022 had the highest admittance targets ever. The immigration levels plan 2023–2025, which was unveiled in November 2022, has an even more ambitious goal of 500,000 new permanent residents year by 2025. 465,000 is the desired number for 2023.
The IRCC needs to process more applications than the 5.2 million it handled across all lines of business in 2022, which was double the amount handled in 2021, in order to meet this goal. The rise in applications processed in 2022 was attributed to new technology, faster processing, and moving more procedures online. The high number of admissions is also expected to be a major factor in achieving the planned levels for 2023 to 2025.
According to the most recent information from the IRCC, Canada is actively working to create a society that is more varied and inclusive by embracing immigrants from around the globe. With ambitious plans for the future and a new record-breaking number of permanent residents welcomed in 2022, Canada is leading the rest of the globe and demonstrating that immigration can be a win-win situation.