Canada Will welcome over 500k new immigrants per year

Canada Will welcome over 500k new immigrants per year

Minister Sean Fraser believes Canada's annual immigration will exceed 500,000, but he cautioned that future increases should be made in a way that supports the needs and interests of all communities.

Last week, the immigration minister visited Toronto to address the Collision. Collision is a global technology conference. After his speaking engagement, he met with CIC News to discuss the future of Canada’s immigration system.

Canada is now looking for more than 430,000 immigrants each year

Canada had previously been seeking more than 340,000 immigrants per year. However, immigration declined in 2020 because of travel restrictions and remote work by Canadian government officials. Canada announced in October 2020 that it would be seeking over 400,000 new immigrants each year to help its post-COVID economic recovery. Canada exceeded its goal by landing an unprecedented 405,000 permanent residents last year.

Fraser presented Canada's Immigrant Levels Plan 2022-2024 in February. Canada currently seeks over 430,000 immigrants annually and plans to target 450,000 by 2024.

Plan 2023-2025 for Immigration: More than 500,000 permanent residents annually?

Fraser will announce updated targets again on November 1st when he announces his Immigration Levels Plan 2023-2025.

It is too early to make a final plan for 2023-2025, but CIC News asked Fraser about his thoughts and to let us know if he was working towards exceeding the annual target of 500,000.

"Look, I wouldn’t put it on a clock. We will get there, I believe. The existing track is allowing us to grow at a rate of more than 1%. This trend is expected to continue. It's not known when exactly we will cross this threshold (500,000 immigrants annually). It will be determined by the needs of each community."

It's not something I take pride in that I get to 500,000, but what's most important to me is that my job is to meet the needs of communities and give them the chance to succeed through our immigration system. That means that we must welcome 500,000 permanent residents within a year. That's something I am happy to do.

"My feeling is that we will get there sooner than expected, as the opportunities and needs associated with welcoming newcomers to Canada are great. Canada will have a strategic advantage if we can make sure we don't exceed the absorptive capacities of our communities while we get there.

Fraser knows the importance of offering enough support to Canadians as well as newcomers.

Canada's ability to provide infrastructure and support to its existing population, as well as to new arrivals, is one of the most important immigration levels.

The minister was asked by Collision if he thought Canada had enough housing to house its growing immigrant population.

This issue was top of mind for the minister with his federal counterparts in Ottawa.

"In the House of Commons, I sit beside one of my predecessors. He is minister Ahmed Hussein, who is now Canada's housing minister. Our conversations about housing tend to go as follows: Ahmed, can you build houses quickly enough to accommodate Canada's new immigrants?" He responds, "Simon, can you quickly bring in immigrant workers to Canada so that they can build the houses?"

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