Canada is expecting more than 1.2 million immigrants by the end of 2023! That’s the largest intake the country has had in decades and to make it happen, the country is now looking at offering more immigration pathways to foreign nationals already residing in Canada. In consideration of the drop in the number of immigrants resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic as well as the current demographic challenges, the government is seeking to identify temporary workers, asylum seekers and especially international students that can meet the labour force growth and demand. Furthermore, it is expected that these new measures will positively impact the country sooner than later as the amalgamation of these individuals’ Canadian education and work experience, English and French language ability, and community and professional networks will bring about faster labour market integration.
Greater demand for international students
Why a great demand for international students? They are typically a younger population who are just starting their careers and have longer lifespan, thereby, being able to counter the aging population. Canada is recognizing all the above factors and is making it easier for them to study and work in Canada! As an example, online study at a Canadian designated learning institution between May 2020 and April 2021 can count towards a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). PGWP is much sought-after as it enables international students to obtain the Canadian work experience they need to be eligible for variety of immigration programs such as Express Entry.
Silver lining for international students from Hong Kong
Last week, the Canadian government announced that they will be instituting new immigration programs designed to accept young people from Hong Kong to Canada in view of the political unrest in that country. In order to attract students, a new fast-tracked three-year open work permit will be offered to recent graduates and those with work experience in essential areas who want to come to Canada to continue their studies or find employment. Individuals must have graduated from a recognized post-secondary institution in the last five years to be eligible and their spouses and children will also be allowed to accompany them to Canada. There will also be two new streams to permanent residency designed for “the best and the brightest” Hong Kong citizens who have a temporary status in Canada:
- For those who graduated with a degree in the last three years
- For those with recent degrees and a year of full-time work experience in Canada who want to return to Canada as soon as the travel restrictions are lifted.
The government added in their announcement that while they remain very concerned with the situation in Hong Kong, they see a silver lining for those who would like to come study, work and/or bring their families to Canada to build a better life here with these new immigration pathways.
Please refer to our LinkedIn page to get access to online webinars or articles posted on the most recent Canadian immigration updates. To discuss the details of your situation, please reach out to our office and we will gladly assist you.