IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) announced today that Canada reached a record-breaking target for admissions of PRs (Permanent Residents) in 2022.
The target, which was set to 431,645 new permanent residents in one year, exceeds the record of 401,000 in 2021. It is the highest number of new permanent residents to arrive in one year that was recorded in the history of Canada.
Immigration Minister Sean Fraser stated, “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 labour shortages, bringing new perspectives and talents to our communities, and enriching our society as a whole. I am excited to see what the future holds and look forward to another historic year in 2023 as we continue to welcome newcomers.”
5.2 million applications were processed by IRCC across all lines of business in 2022. This consists of applications for permanent residence, temporary residence and citizenship. In fact, it is double the number of applications that were processed in 2021.
IRCC credits new technology, new resources, simplified processing, and bringing more processes online for the increase in applications processed and the high number of admissions as well. Also, the Canadian Government committed $50 million to IRCC for 2022-2023 in the Fall Economic Statement for addressing the enduring backlog of applications, which stands at 1.09 million applications across all lines of business as of November 30, 2022.
Immigration Levels Plan 2023-2025
Admission targets in Canada are set out in the annual Immigration Levels Plan. The plan for the year 2022 was released in February 2022, with the highest number of admission targets ever until the plan for 2023-2025 was released.
Labour force growth in Canada is approximately 100% dependent on immigration. There are almost one million job vacancies in Canada and a shortage of skilled labour owing to the aging workforce. Immigrants play a very crucial role in the economy of Canada as it is anticipated that 9 million individuals in the country will reach the retirement age of 65 by 2030. The aging population in Canada signifies that the worker-to-retiree ratio is expected to shift from 7 to 1 50 years ago to 2 to 1 by 2035.
Moreover, about 75% of the population growth in the country depends on immigration. That is because Canada has one of the lowest global birth rates at 1.4 children per woman.
To give a boost to the population, Canada has been making every effort to welcome a large number of immigrants in recent years. According to the 2021 census on immigration, 1.3 million new permanent residents arrived in the country between 2016 and 2021. In other words, 1 out of every 4 respondents was or had been a Canadian landed immigrant or permanent resident – the highest ratio since Confederation and the largest ratio among G7 nations. It is expected that immigrants will make up 36% of the population in Canada by 2036.
Looking ahead, the immigration levels plan 2023-2025 that was released in November last year. It has a determined target of 500,000 new permanent residents each year by 2025. The target for 2023 is 465,000.