Immigration to Canada will not be adversely impacted by the recent coronavirus pandemic, as per the Canada Immigration Levels Plan for 2020-22, which was released by the government on 12th March 2020. The plan indicated that the country will welcome 341,000 new immigrants in 2020, 351,000 in 2021, and 361,000 in 2022. Up to 390,000 immigrants may be allowed to enter in 2022 – bringing the total to one million newcomers over the next three years.
As of 22nd March 2020, Canada had recorded 1,400 Covid-19 positive cases, 20 fatalities, and 18 recoveries. On Saturday, the USA-Canada border was closed to nonessential traffic. Federal and provincial governments in Canada have recommended social distancing, and announced relief measures for affected workers and businesses. On Sunday, Nova Scotia declared a state of emergency.
Falling oil prices, possible recession, and weakening of industries – specially tourism and hospitality – will cause setbacks for the Canadian economy. The government has introduced measures, such as lower interest rates, to combat this situation. Importantly, a long-term measure for ensuring economic stability is to maintain a healthy level of Canada skilled immigration, which has long been a major tool for labor force growth in the country.
Up till the 1980s, Canada would reduce immigration levels during periods of recession. However, in recent decades, authorities have realized that the economic strain caused by the country’s aging population, low birth rate, and dwindling domestic workforce can only be addressed by inviting more people to migrate to Canada from India, Philippines, China, and other labor-abundant countries – even during economic slowdowns.
Immigrants not only fulfill job vacancies in key industries, but also pay taxes, and stimulate demand in the market by purchasing goods and services. Thus, the announcement of this ambitious Immigration Levels Plan is very well-timed, as increasing immigrant intake will be a key element of Canada’s strategy to combat the impact of the coronavirus.
Once the situation is normalized, the government will take all necessary measures to boost economic growth. Gradually increasing Canada immigration levels will prove to be an indispensable aspect of the strategy. In this event, more and more aspirants will file their applications. To stake a claim for a secure future – and access publicly funded healthcare and education – it is advisable to proactively submit your application, under expert guidance, before the pool is saturated with an influx of candidates.