Newsone Nigeria understands Canada, one of the top destinations of Nigerians, plans to bring in more than 1.2 million new immigrants over the next three years, the federal immigration minister said on Friday, as the country tries to fill gaps in its labour market and boost the economy, both hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Canada Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino while speaking to reporters in Ottawa, said the federal government aims to accept 401,000 new permanent residents in 2021, another 411,000 in 2022 and then 421,000 in 2023.
Canada needs more workers, he said, “and immigration is the way to get there”.
Statement on Canada Immigration
“Before the pandemic, our government’s goal to drive the economy forward through immigration was ambitious. Now it’s simply vital,” said Mendicino, who tabled the new immigration targets earlier in the day.
Canadians understand that newcomers are playing an outsized role in stepping up to fill some of our most acute labour shortages and that growing our population is imperative if we want to leverage the advantages we have and keep 🇨🇦 competitive on the world stage. pic.twitter.com/YbHhyoONTL
— Marco Mendicino (@marcomendicino) October 30, 2020
A refugee and immigration policy researcher at the University of Calgary School of Public Policy, Robert Falconer, tweeted Friday that if the government meets its goals, the next three years will be “the highest years on record since 1911”.
“Canada announced new immigration targets today for 2021-2023. If they hit them, it will be the highest years on record since 1911.”
— Robert Falconer (@RRFalconer) October 30, 2020
Ottawa in a notice outlining the details of its plan, said it aims to welcome 232,500 newcomers from the economic class of immigrants in 2021, as well as 103,500 family members of people already in Canada, 59,500 refugees and other protected persons. Another 5,500 people will be accepted on humanitarian grounds.
“Following the tabling of the 2020 Annual Report to Parliament on Immigration, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is pleased to release details on the Government of Canada’s Immigration Levels Plan for 2021-2023. Canada aims to welcome 401,000 new permanent residents in 2021, 411,000 in 2022, and 421,000 in 2023.”
Newsone Nigeria understands that Canada immigration system has long been held up as a model, as it has historically brought in skilled workers as well as refugees and individuals seeking to reunite with family members already in the country.
The country closed Canada August, it had settled 128,425 newcomers, Reuters news agency reported – less than half of the 341,000-person target it had set for 2020.
Mendicino said to help make up the shortfall, the government would offer permanent resident status to temporary foreign workers, international students, and asylum claimants already in Canada.