Canada’s newly appointed Immigration Minister Chris Alexander revealed his goals for his department in 2014.
Speaking to Postmedia news this month, Alexander said that his main goal is to provide faster and more efficient immigration and visa services in the New Year.
Alexander praised the work of his predecessor, former Immigration Minister and current Employment Minister Jason Kenney, in successfully building an immigration system suited to Canada’s labour needs. Alexander says he aims to build on that momentum and continuing to streamline the process so that backlogs and wait times continue to drop.
The most important focus for Citizenship and Immigration Canada in the next year will be finalizing the expression of interest program, set to launch in January of 2015. The new system will allow potential immigrants to create online profiles from which potential employers and local governments can choose those best suited to their current needs.
“We have to move at the speed of business in our immigration system,” Alexander said. “Whenever we accept more applications than we process, we’re basically divorcing our immigration flows from our economic needs and that doesn’t serve immigrants well and it certainly doesn’t serve the Canadian economy well.”
The aim by 2015 is for economic immigrant applicants to obtain a visa within six months. Alexander says that dependents, including spouse and parental sponsorships which are to reopen next month, should ultimately be able to join their sponsor within months under the new system.