Last Updated on January 24, 2019
Oct 31, 2018 – Canada’s federal government plans to increase annual immigration levels to 350,000 in 2021, according to the latest figures announced on Wednesday, October 31.
The new immigration levels plan sets out a target of more than 1 million immigrants over the next three years.
Should Canada deliver on this plan, immigration levels will move closer to 1% of its population, a goal initially advocated by the Liberal Party of Canada in 1993.
In 2019, Canada will welcome 330,800 newcomers, in 2020 it will welcome 341,000 and 2021 will see it hit the 350,000 mark. In total, the plan targets 1,021,800 new immigrants.
Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen said the new levels plan builds on the foundations of 2017, when the federal government announce a three-year plan for the first time.
The main gains seen between now and 2021 are in the Economic Class, which will welcome 202,300 immigrants on its own in 2021.
Canada’s 2019 to 2021 Immigration Levels Plan
|Immigration category||Category||2019 – Target||2020 – Target||2021 – Target|
|Economic||Federal High Skilled||81,400||85,800||88,800|
|Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program||2,000||4,000||TBD|
|Provincial Nominee Program||61,000||67,800||71,300|
|Quebec Skilled Workers and Business||TBD||TBD||TBD|
|Family||Spouses, Partners, and Children||68,000||70,000||70,000|
|Parents and Grandparents||20,500||21,000||21,000|
|Refugees and Protected Persons||Protected Persons in Canada & Dependents Abroad||16,500||18,000||20,000|
|Resettled Refugees – Government Assisted||9,300||10,700||10,700|
|Resettled Refugees – Blended Visa Office Referred||1,650||1,000||1,000|
|Resettled Refugees – Privately Sponsored||19,000||20,000||20,000|
|Total Refugees and Protected Persons||46,450||49,700||51,700|
|Humanitarian and Other||Total Humanitarian & Other||4,250||4,500||5,000|
|Overall Planned Permanent Admissions||330,800||341,000||350,000|
Hussen said the central motivation behind the increased numbers was to support business and boost the Canadian economy.
“The new multi-year immigration levels plan supports Canadian employers and businesses by ensuring they have the skilled labour they need to spur innovation and help to keep our country at the forefront of the global economy,” he said.
“Building on the strong foundation set out last year and continuing to increase economic immigration will help Canada stay competitive and attract talent from around the world.”
While the increases are ambitious, they continue to be made in a staged and controlled manner, as Canada attempts to grow its capacity to integrate new immigrants along with the higher levels.
The Federal High Skilled category will increase to 88,800 in 2021, according to the plan, accounting for the immigrants come to Canada through the Express Entry system.
Elsewhere, the Provincial Nominee Program allocation will also increase, to 71,300 in 2021. This marks an increase of more than 10,000 immigrants between 2019 and 2021 for the Provincial Nominee Programs.
The Atlantic Immigration Pilot, Caregivers and Quebec Skilled Worker and Business programs are all marked ‘to be determined’ in the 2021 plan. However, there is ample room left in the Economic class to provide these allocations at a later date.
The Family Class will see the smallest increases.
In 2019, the levels plan allows for 88,500 newcomers in the Family Class, compared to 86,000 under the 2018 plan.
This will increase to 91,000 in 2020, and remain the same in 2021.
More than 90,000 family reunification places still represent a significant commitment to the category from the federal government, although it is clear the increases are focused in the Economic Class.
Refugees and Protected Persons
Staged increases will also happen in the Refugees and Protected Persons class, from 46,450 in 2019 to 51,700 in 2021.
Through its welcoming of Syrian refugees in 2015 and 2016, the federal government has established itself as open to genuine refugee claimants.
It has also had to deal with a surge of irregular border crossers streaming in from the U.S.
However, the federal government has still chosen to increase the allocation for refugees to continue Canada’s reputation as one of the most welcoming countries in the world.
Immigration Targets for The Previous Three Years
|Immigration Category||Category||2016 target||2017 target||2018 target|
|Economic||Federal Economic- High Skilled||58,400||73,700||74,900|
|Atlantic Immigration Pilot||N/A||N/A||1,000|
|Federal Economic- Caregivers||22,000||18,000||17,000|
|Federal Economic- Business||800||500||700|
|Provincial Nominee Program||47,800||51,000||55,000|
|Quebec Skilled Worker||26,200||29,300||28,900|
|Family||Spouses, Partners & Children||60,000||64,000||66,000|
|Parents & Grandparents||20,000||20,000||20,000|
|Refugees & Protected Persons||Protected Persons in Canada & dependants abroad||10,000||15,000||16,000|
|Blended Visa Office-Referred||2,400||1,500||1,500|
|Privately Sponsored Refugees||17,800||16,000||18,000|
|Refugees & Protected Persons Total||55,800||40,000||43,000|
|Humanitarian and Other||Humanitarian and Other||3,600||3,500||3,500|
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