Last Updated on December 31, 2019
2019-12-29 – From a stable year at the federal level to a tumultuous 365 days of scrapped applications and reversed program changes in Quebec, there has been plenty to talk about regarding Canada immigration during 2019.
Federally, it was one of the least eventful periods in recent years, with few major changes made by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
The further controversy surrounding the application process for the Parents and Grandparents Program and an overhaul of the caregiver immigration system were the two major federal hot topics of 2019.
Meanwhile, Quebec produced plenty of talking points.
The governing Coalition Avenir Quebec has lurched from scrapping 16,000 existing Quebec Skilled Worker applications to the start of invitations through Arrima, through introducing a Quebec values test, before introducing reforms to the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ), then promptly rolling them back two weeks later.
The CAQ, and Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette, endured a baptism of fire while trying to reduce immigration in a province where employers are desperate for increased immigration.
Elsewhere, Canada’s other provinces produced a few new programs of their own, including new Tech Draws in Ontario and a regional entrepreneur stream in British Columbia.
Here, immigration.ca looks back at 2019 developments in Canada immigration, and forward to what 2020 might have to offer.
This was the first year since the system was introduced in 2015 that the total number of Invitations to Apply (ITA) did not set a new annual record.
Canada issued 85,1\300 ITAs during 2019, down from the 89,800 issued in 2018 and the 86,023 issued in 2017.
What is Express Entry?
Express Entry is an immigration system implemented by Canadian immigration authorities (IRCC) on January 1, 2015, which manages skilled worker applications under Federal Economic programs. This includes the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program the Canada Experience Class and parts of the Provincial Nomination Programs.
This is a sure signal that the system is maturing, with IRCC officials fully aware of how the ITAs it issues translate into permanent resident arrivals in Canada.
In previous years, IRCC has tinkered with the CRS by introducing fewer points for qualified job offers and more points for Canadian education, among other changes. In 2019 there were no such CRS changes, indicating the system was working exactly how IRCC intended.
It is logical that annual ITA totals will rise as Canada’s high skilled immigration targets increase, meaning the 2018 record will almost certainly be broken in the coming years.
Canada plans to welcome 85,800 new high skilled immigrants in 2020, up from 81,400 in 2019. More new arrivals must eventually mean more ITAs.
Federal High-Skilled Immigration Targets
Individual Draw ITA Record Stands
The record for the highest individual draw remains the 3,923 ITAs issued on April 13, 2017.
IRCC peaked at 3,900 ITAs, a total issued in four out of 25 draws, during 2019. The same largest draw size was recorded in 2018.
The preferred draw size in 2019 was 3,350 ITAs, issued in 10 draws, and 3,600 ITAs, issued in eight draws.
IRCC continued its preference for draws every two weeks in 2019, although it twice left three weeks between draws due to system maintenance.
The two Federal Skilled Trades Program-specific draws of 2019 produced a total of 1,000 ITAs.
It was notable that both of the all-program draws that followed program-specific draws saw a marked increase in the CRS score, due to a build-up of higher-scoring profiles.
Rising Minimum CRS Scores
One of the features of 2019, unwelcome for candidates with CRS scores in the low 400s, was the rising minimum CRS score.
Minimum CRS scores went from a low of 438 in the January 30 draw, to a high of 475 on October 30. The graph below shows that sharp increases happen when IRCC strays from the pattern of draws every two weeks.
Withdraws every two weeks, the CRS scores tend to edge down by a few points with each draw. However, when more than two weeks are left between draws, it rises sharply. This occurred four times during 2019:
- January 30 to February 20: Three weeks between draws, the CRS score rises from 438 to 457.
- May 1 to May 29: Four weeks between all-program draws (Skilled Trades draw in between), CRS score rises from 450 to 470.
- July 24 to August 12: Nearly three weeks between draws, the CRS score rises from 459 to 466.
- October 2 to October 30: Four weeks between all-program draws (Skilled Trades draw in between), the CRS score rises from 464 to 475.
Provincial Express Entry Streams
Canada’s provinces continued to innovate in 2019 with ways of using the Express Entry system to attract specific candidates.
The year saw Ontario begin Tech Draws through its Express Entry-linked Human Capital Priorities stream, following a similar initiative from British Columbia.
Nova Scotia, meanwhile, began a new Labour Market Priorities stream specifically for doctors.
New Brunswick also opened its Express Entry stream to candidates already living and working in the province, while also indicated it would occasionally issue invites to Express Entry candidates in response to labour market needs.
Saskatchewan also took the bold step of dramatically increasing the number of eligible occupations through its Express Entry stream, listing targeted NOC codes with each draw.
Express Entry In 2020
Stakeholders should expect more of the same from Express Entry during 2020. Canada’s re-elected minority Liberal government did not flag any intended changes either before or after the October election.
Previous changes to the CRS have been tabled well in advance, making further alterations in 2020 more unlikely.
One possible change that could impact Express Entry is the introduction of a Municipal Nominee Program.
The federal government intends to give Canada’s municipalities the power select 5,000 immigrants per year, with more details expected in 2020.
It is possible the new program could be linked to Express Entry.
Express Entry: Key Articles and Pages
Canada Express Entry
Express Entry Immigration Draws
Express Entry 9-Month Review: More ITAs So Far In 2019 Than Record-Breaking Year Of 2018
Express Entry 6-Month Review: Is Canada On Target to Break 2018 Invitation Record?
Express Entry Year-End Report 2018: Record Numbers Show Interest In Canada Immigration
How Many Points Do You Need to Immigrate to Canada Under Express Entry?
How Express Entry Works
Where do 66% of Express Entry Applicants Plan to Live in Canada?
How Indian Citizens Dominate Canada Express Entry ITAs
Top 10 Jobs That Receive The Most ITAs Under Express Entry
How to Immigrate to Canada Through Express Entry with CRS Scores Under 400
These Are the Top 2019 Jobs Under Canada Express Entry Immigration
The Coalition Avenir Quebec’s policies for Quebec immigration have produced some major talking points during 2019.
The controversy began at the back end of 2018, with Premier Francois Legault’s government following through on its promise to cut immigration. Targets for 2019 were set at 40,000 newcomers, down on the more than 52,000 targeted for 2018.
The move came despite Quebec businesses suffering from a chronic labour market shortage, which has seen record numbers of job vacancies and record low unemployment.
Next, the CAQ took aim at the Quebec Skilled Worker Program. system
The previous provincial government had launched the Quebec Expression of Interest system, known as Arrima, in August 2018, but there remained a backlog of 18,000 applications under the old system.
Looking for a clean start under the EOI system, the CAQ moved to scrap the backlog of applications, some of which had been in the system for more than a decade.
Furthermore, the CAQ tried to scrap the applications before Bill 9 – the piece of legislation dealing with the issue – had passed through the National Assembly.
An injunction was issued by the Quebec superior court forcing the CAQ to continue processing applications until Bill 9 became law, which eventually happened in June 2019.
After the backlog applications were scrapped, Quebec issued its first invitations through Arrima in July 2019, almost a year after the portal had opened for Expressions of Interest to be submitted.
Since July, a total of seven draws have taken place for candidates either with a job offer, or who were legally living and working in Quebec when their application under the old system was scrapped.
Quebec Values Test
Quebec will introduce a new Quebec Values Test from January 1, 2020.
A new regulation published in the Official Gazette on October 30, 2019 means candidates must pass the test before receiving a Quebec Selection Certificate (CSQ).
According to the amendment, candidates and their family members “must obtain an attestation of learning about democratic values and the Quebec values expressed by the Charter of human rights and freedoms”.
Sample questions include:
- Since March 27, 2019, Bill 21, the secularism of the state, says every new police officer cannot wear religious symbols on the job. True or false?”
- Who is allowed to legally marry in Quebec? Circle the options: M/F, F/F, M/M
- Men and women in Quebec have the same rights. True or false?
- Identify the situation(s) where there could be discriminatory hiring practices: A woman who is pregnant, a person who doesn’t have the right qualifications or a person of colour.
Quebec Experience Program
The CAQ did not stop with the QSWP.
The latter part of 2019 saw a bungled attempt at overhauling the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ).
Provincial Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette introduced a swathe of changes that limited both the eligible degrees and diplomas under the graduate category of the program and the number of eligible NOCs under the skilled worker category.
The changes took effect on November 1, 2019.
They caused an uproar among thousands of candidates already in Quebec who were planning on applying to stay permanently through the PEQ. Suddenly, they no longer qualified due to the restrictions put in place by Jolin-Barrette and the CAQ.
Eventually, the CAQ moved to scrap the changes and reinstate the pre-November 1 PEQ requirements. Jolin-Barrette said he would consult stakeholders before producing new lists of eligible diplomas and NOC codes.
Quebec Immigrant Integration
During 2019, the CAQ also launched a number of initiatives aimed at improving immigrant integration.
The provincial government introduced better access to French classes for new immigrants in a $70.3 million plan.
It also introduced a new ‘Personalized Career Pathway’ for new immigrants, which sees candidates contacted before they arrive in the province to begin the process of integration.
The CAQ had also expanded the number of MIFI regional offices to help businesses and candidates in smaller areas.
Quebec Immigrant Investor Program
The Quebec Immigrant Investor Program was open for more than half of 2019 under the application window that initially opened in 2018, with new requirements.
As of November 1, 2019, intake has paused under the program until June 30, 2020. This offers candidates an opportunity to get their applications in order ready for the opening of a new window.
Applicants must have these qualifications:
- Legally acquired personal net worth of $2 million;
- Two years of suitable management or business experience within the five years preceding the application;
- Investment of $1.2 million into a passive government guaranteed investment for a period of five years bearing no interest;
- Intend to settle in the province of Quebec.
Quebec Immigration In 2020
Given the events of 2019, it is difficult to predict what will happen in Quebec immigration during 2020.
The year will start with the introduction of the Quebec Values Test on January 1, while the CAQ’s revised changes to the Quebec Experience Program are also expected earlier in the year.
The year should also see the start of general draws under Quebec Expression of Interest. Until now, the only invites to be issued have gone to candidates with job offers and those living in Quebec who have applications terminated under the previous system.
Meanwhile, the latest application window for the QIIP is expected to launch in July 2020.
The CAQ’s 2020 immigration levels plan targets an increase in 2019 levels. The immigration target is between 43,000 and 44,500 in 2020, compared to between 38,000 and 42,000 in 2019.
Quebec’s 2020 Immigration Levels Plan
Quebec Immigration: Key Articles and Pages
Quebec Immigration Draws
Quebec Expression of Interest
Quebec Immigrant Investor Program
Quebec Manufacturing Industry Facing Chronic Shortage Of Nearly 20,000 Jobs
Quebec Increases Number Of Top-Scoring Qualifications In New Areas Of Training List
Quebec Restores Pre-November 1 Criteria For Quebec Experience Program (PEQ)
Quebec To Increase Immigration Levels to 44,500 in 2020
Quebec To Introduce Values Test For New Immigrants
Applications Suspended for Popular Quebec Immigrant Investor Program Until 2020
Quebec Announces Plan To Improve Access To MIDI Services For Businesses
Quebec Government Immigration Plan Backfires as Fewer French-Speaking Immigrants Accepted
Quebec Government Urged To Increase Immigration To Tackle Chronic Labour Shortage
Quebec Launches ‘Personalized Career Pathway’ For New Immigrants
Quebec Targets Better Immigrant Integration With Wider Access To French Classes
Quebec To Start Issuing Invitations Under New Expression of Interest Immigration System
16,000 Quebec Immigration Applications Scrapped As CAQ Forces Through Bill 9
Quebec Government Proposes Immigration Increase to Above 50,000 by 2022
Immigration.ca Livestream: How Bill 9 Court Decision Affects Employers and Applicants to Quebec
British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program
British Columbia continued as one of Canada’s most consistent and prolific provincial immigration programs, conducting weekly draws throughout 2019.
The year also saw the western province launch a new Entrepreneur Regional Pilot, with an initial sign up of 30 communities.
Invitations were issued through the pilot, and through the main BC Entrepreneur stream, through 2019.
The province also moved to extend the successful BC PNP Tech Pilot into 2020.
BCPNP: Key Articles and Pages
British Columbia Immigration
British Columbia Immigration Draws
BC PNP Tech Pilot
Canada Unemployment Holds Steady In October, With Main Gains In British Columbia
Eight New Communities Added To British Columbia Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot
British Columbia Extends BC PNP Tech Pilot For Another Year To June 2020
British Columbia’s Entrepreneur Regional Pilot Opens As More Than 30 Communities Sign Up
Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program
Ontario made several changes to the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program during 2019.
After a consultation period, Canada’s most populous province introduced changes to its In-Demand Skills and Entrepreneur streams, launched new Tech Draws through the Human Capital Priorities stream and a new Regional Immigration Pilot.
Three occupations in nursing-related fields and trucking were added to the In-Demand Skills stream.
Meanwhile, the province cut experience, net worth and investment requirements for the Entrepreneur stream.
Summary of Ontario NOIs 2019
|Stream||Notifications of interest|
|Human Capital Priorities Stream (HCP)||6,958|
|French Speaking Skilled Worker Stream (FSSW)||549|
|Skilled Trades Stream (ST)||732|
The new Regional Immigration Pilot, falling under the existing OINP Employer Job Offer category, is designed to help bring more skilled worker immigrants to the communities of Chatham-Kent, Cornwall and Belleville/Quinte West.
At the end of 2019, the province reached its federal government nomination allocation of 6,650, promptly receiving a further 700 nominations in December.
A government official called for the allocation to be double to 13,300 nominations by 2021.
OINP: Key Articles and Pages
Ontario immigration Draws
Ontario Launches New OINP Regional Immigration Pilot
Ontario Immigration Reaches 2019 Nomination Allocation, Then Receives 700 Extra Spaces
How Ontario Is Addressing Shortage of Nursing-Related Occupations
Ontario Trucking Industry Benefits From Changes To Provincial Immigration Stream
Ontario Immigration Closes Popular Employer Job Offer Streams For Rest of 2019
Ontario Urged To Address Immigration Imbalance Towards Greater Toronto Area
Ontario Tech Draws: An In-Depth Look At Every Targeted Occupation
Ontario Planning New OINP Regional Immigration Pilot
Ontario Slashes Entrepreneur Stream Investment, Net Worth and Experience Requirements
Ontario Adds 3 Occupations Under In-Demand Skills Immigration Stream
Consultation Period Ends For Raft of Planned Ontario Immigration Changes
Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program
Manitoba was another province to have a quiet 2019 on the immigration front.
Regular draws continued through the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program, including through the International Education Stream launched at the end of 2018.
The province removed 7 occupations of the in-demand list in May, and also said it would introduce new polices to help immigrants settle in rural areas.
More details are expected in 2020.
MPNP: Key Articles and Pages
Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program
In Saskatchewan, the main development in 2019 came with a bold increase in the number of In-Demand Occupations.
Previously, the province published a list of 19 occupations eligible through its Occupation In-Demand and Express Entry categories.
Changes saw the list of eligible occupations expanded to more than 200.
The province continues regular draws through the skilled worker and entrepreneur expression of interest systems.
December saw the province launch a new International Graduate Entrepreneur stream to attract graduates of Saskatchewan institutions to stay and build businesses in the province.
SINP: Key Articles and Pages
Saskatchewan Immigration Draws
Saskatchewan Premier Calls For More Provincial Control Over Immigration
Saskatchewan Launches New International Graduate Entrepreneur Stream
Saskatchewan Makes Hundreds More Occupations Eligible For Popular Immigration Streams
Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program
Alberta was another province to have a quiet year in terms of immigration.
Regular draws took place through Alberta Express Entry, with the province reaching its federal allocation of 6,000 nominations in December.
The province introduced a small but important change to the eligible qualifications for graduates under the Alberta Opportunity Stream in late November.
AINP: Key Articles and Pages
Alberta Immigration Draws
Alberta Immigration Reaches 2019 Federal Government Nomination Limit
Alberta Eases Process For Graduates Applying To Alberta Opportunity Stream
Alberta Provincial Nomination Allocation Hits 6,000 For 2019
Nova Scotia Nominee Program
Nova Scotia continues to build on its recent success in attracting more immigrants during 2019.
The province has regularly shown its ability to quickly respond to labour market requirements with new immigration streams.
In 2019, it launched new streams targeting:
- intermediate skilled workers through Occupations In-Demand, and
- physicians through Labour Market Priorities for Physicians.
It also continued to issue invites under its general Labour Market Priorities stream, through which it targets different NOC codes with each draw.
Regular draws also continued through the province’s streams for entrepreneurs.
NSNP: Key Articles and Pages
Nova Scotia Immigration
Nova Scotia Immigration Draws
Nova Scotia Targets Social Workers In New Labour Market Priorities Draw
Nova Scotia Immigration Targets U.K. Doctors With New Recruitment Trip
Nova Scotia Breaks Record For Most Entrepreneur Stream Invites Issued
Nova Scotia Immigration Targets Doctors With New Express Entry-Linked Physicians Stream
Nova Scotia Sees Sharp Increase In Immigration During 2019
Nova Scotia Launches Occupations In Demand Pilot Targeting Intermediate Skilled Positions
Immigration Drives Nova Scotia Population to All-Time High
New Brunswick Provincial Nominee Program
The main immigration development of 2019 for the New Brunswick Provincial Nominee Program was the move to revamp selection factors for the provincial skilled worker stream.
A new application guide dated September 2019 saw several changes made to age, language, education, experience and job offer requirements.
The province also began accepting Expression of Interest from specific Express Entry candidates after the launch of a new online application system.
NBPNP: Key Articles and Pages
New Brunswick immigration
New Brunswick Revamps Selection Factors For Skilled Worker Immigration Stream
New Brunswick Accepting Expression of Interest From Specific Express Entry Candidates
New Brunswick Businesses Want Streamlined Atlantic Immigration Pilot to Tackle Labour Shortage
Prince Edward Island Provincial Nomination Program
Prince Edward Island conducted monthly draws during 2019 through its Labour Impact, Express Entry and Business Impact streams, part of the PEI Expression of Interest system.
Despite scrapping its controversial deposit-based business immigration streams back in 2018, the province still netted $17.4 million from relinquished deposits.
The province continues to see success in attracting healthy numbers of immigrants considering its small population.
PEI PNP: Key Articles and Pages
Prince Edward Island Immigration
Prince Edward Island Immigration Draws
Prince Edward Island Government Nets $17.4m From Cancelled Business Immigration Streams
Ontario Eclipsed by Prince Edward Island on Important Canada Immigration Statistic
Newfoundland & Labrador Provincial Nominee Program
Newfoundland began accepting Expressions of Interest for the province’s new Entrepreneur stream during 2019.
The province reported increased interest in immigration, which it said was driving up processing times.
Meanwhile, the NLPNP has increased the number of employers designated under the Atlantic Immigration Pilot to 279.
Key Articles and Pages
Newfoundland & Labrador Immigration
Newfoundland Now Has 279 Designated Employers For Atlantic Immigration Pilot
Newfoundland Announces Four New Rounds For International Entrepreneur Expressions of Interest
Increased Interest In Newfoundland Immigration Drives Up Processing Times
Newfoundland Immigration Aims To Improve Foreign Credential Recognition
Developments in Family Class immigration during 2019 focused on the Parents and Grandparents Program.
The latest attempt to make the PGP application process fairer resulted in huge controversy when the online Interest to Sponsor form was available for just a few minutes on January 28, 2019.
IRCC says 100,000 people tried to access the form, with only 20,000 application places available.
Canada’s federal government awarded 70 places under the PGP to settle two lawsuits that said the online application system was unfair, according to a CBC report.
Ottawa said in December 2019 that details on its latest attempt to find the right way to accept applications would be published ‘soon’. In an update on December 30, IRCC said the expected PGP launch date of January 1, 2020 would be delayed as a new intake process is developed.
Meanwhile, Canada took steps to help victims of abuse with two initiatives, one a pilot allowing the sponsorship of undeclared family members, and the second allowing family abuse victims to qualify for Temporary Residence Permits.
Canada plans to admit 91,000 new permanent residents under the Family Class in 2020, 2,500 more than in 2019.
Family Class Immigration Levels Plan
|Spouses, Partners, and Children||68,000||70,000||70,000|
|Parents and Grandparents||20,500||21,000||21,000|
Family Class: Key Articles and Pages
Family Class Sponsorship Immigration
Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program
Parent and Grandparent Super-Visa
Parents and Grandparents Program: 2020 Intake Details Expected Soon
Ottawa Settles Lawsuits By Awarding 70 Parents and Grandparents Program Places: Report
Canada’s Parents and Grandparents Program Opens and Closes in Minutes
Canada Opens Immigration Pilot For Sponsorship of Undeclared Family Members
Canada Starts Giving Temporary Residence Permits To Family Abuse Victims
Canada’s caregiver immigration offering saw several updates in 2019.
Stakeholders began the year unsure of what the future would hold, with the existing caregiver pilots due to expire during 2019.
Two new caregiver pilots – the Home Child Care Provider Pilot and Home Support Worker Pilot – opened for applications in June 2019, replacing the old pilots.
Both offer a direct pathway to permanent residence and allow applicants to bring family members with them to Canada.
Each new pilot has a maximum of 2,750 principal applicants, for a total of 5,500 principal applicants per year, plus their immediate family.
The federal government also opened two application windows for a new Interim Pathway for Caregivers. The short-term pathway was aimed at caregivers who came to Canada as temporary foreign workers since 2014 but were unable to qualify for permanent residence through an existing program.
The Home Child Care Provider Pilot and Home Support Worker Pilot remain open. The Interim Pathway is now closed.
Canada’s 2019 to 2021 Immigration Levels Plan
Caregiver Immigration: Key Articles and Pages
Canada Caregiver Immigration
Canada’s Two New Caregiver Immigration Pilots Now Open For Applications
Do I Qualify for Canada’s New Interim Pathway for Caregivers?
Canada To Overhaul Foreign Caregiver System With Two New Pilot Programs
How to Get a Canada Work Permit For a Caregiver
Developments for temporary workers in 2019 were again focused around Quebec.
While the French-speaking province cut immigration levels in 2019, it pumped resources into accepting more temporary workers.
Stakeholders argue this represented a superficial fix to the current labour market shortage.
On the federal front, Canada’s Global Talent Stream continues to be a world leader for attracting tech talent. The flagship GTS, which boasts two-week processing, gives Canadian employers a crucial edge in the battle for foreign talent.
Other developments included a logjam of Labour Market Impact Assessment applications delaying work permit processing.
Ottawa also began allowing foreign workers facing abuse from their employers to switch to open work permits.
Temporary Workers: Key Articles and Pages
Temporary Foreign Worker Program
International Mobility Program
International Experience Canada Program
Global Talent Stream
Canada Warns of Work Permit Delays Due to Labour Market Impact Assessment Processing
Ottawa Set To Allow Foreign Workers Facing Abuse To Switch To Open Work Permits
Quebec Spends $55m Helping Businesses Hire Temporary Workers While Cutting Skilled Worker Immigration
Quebec Sees Sharp Rise In Temporary Workers As Provincial Government Cuts Immigration
Quebec To Introduce Placement Agency Licences To Improve Protection of Temporary Foreign Workers
International students continue to be coveted, initially by educational institutions but also as ready-made new permanent residents of Canada after graduation.
Canada was home to more than 570,000 study permit holders at the end of 2018, with federal and provincial immigration authorities doing all they could in 2019 to attract and retain more students.
During 2019, the Student Direct Stream was expanded to offer expedited processing to students from Pakistan, Senegal and Morocco.
Universities in Atlantic Canada, meanwhile, reported a surge in numbers of international students.
With the current international student population dominated by Indian and Chinese students, Ottawa also announced plans to spend $148 million on attracting students from different countries.
There was also a focus on international students who were sanctioned for working more than their study permits allow.
Strict limitations are placed on how much a study permit holder can work in Canada, while the students argue they need to work more to afford the cost of their education.
International Students and Graduates: Key Articles and Pages
Canada Student Visa
Student Direct Stream
How Much Money Do I Need To Study In Canada As An International Student?
Canada’s Top 10 Universities Names Among Best In The World
International Student Numbers See Sharp Rise At Atlantic Canada Universities
Canada Expands Student Direct Stream To Include Applicants From Senegal and Morocco
Canada To Spend $148m On Boosting Intake Of International Students From Different Countries
Pakistani Students: 20-Day Canada Study Permit Processing Via Student Direct Stream
International Students In Canada Say They Have To Work Long Hours To Pay Tuition Fees
Study In Canada Visa Rejections High For Certain Qualified International Students
Study In Canada Candidates Warned Not All Programs Make Them Eligible For PGWP
Indian Study Permit Holders In Canada Rise 350% In 5 Years
Well Over Half a Million Study Permit Holders Now in Canada – Audio
Nova Scotia Seeing Success in Retaining International Students
With a new federal immigration minister at the helm in the shape of former Crown Prosecutor Marco Mendicino, plenty of Canada immigration developments are expected in 2020.
The Liberal Party made a number of promises on immigration ahead of the October election, back up in Justin Trudeau’s mandate letter to Mendicino.
Mendicino must also be prepared his first immigration levels plan to submit to parliament.
Liberal Government Promises On Immigration
1) Continued managed immigration level increases
Given the consensus already mentioned between Canada’s main parties, a continuation of managed immigration increases under the Liberals can be expected.
The 2018 immigration levels plan saw numbers expected to rise to 350,000 newcomers per year by 2021.
2) Creation of a new Municipal Nominee Program
The Liberals have proposed a new Municipal Nominee Program to help smaller communities struggling with ageing populations and shrinking labour forces.
The MNP would operate alongside the existing Provincial Nominee Program, with a minimum allocation of 5,000 spaces per year.
3) Making the Atlantic Immigration Pilot permanent
The Atlantic Immigration Pilot is another program introduced by the Liberals aimed at bringing more immigrants to a region struggling with ageing populations and shrinking labour markets.
Initially introduced as a pilot, the Liberals propose to make it permanent.
4) Modernization of the Safe Third Country Agreement with the U.S.
The steady flow of asylum seekers crossing the border from the U.S. at unrecognized points has been contentious for Trudeau throughout his first term.
Those numbers increased beyond 2018 levels in the summer months, meaning it remains a major issue, particularly in Quebec as the province that receives 95 percent of border crossers.
5) Abolishing the citizenship application fee
Trudeau’s proposal to abolish the $630 citizenship application fee ($530 for processing and $100 ‘right of citizenship’ fee) is projected to cost taxpayers $100 million per year.
It is unclear where the other parties stand on this. The fee was significantly increased under the previous Conservative government.
Meanwhile, further developments can be expected in Quebec, starting with the introduction of the Quebec values test on January 1, 2020.
The French-speaking province is also likely to have a second attempt at reforming the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ) after the botched effort at the end of 2019.