The Canadian government recently announced that it admitted 108,000 permanent residents in the early months of 2022. The announcement also confirmed that Canada surpassed its goal of making final decisions on 147,000 applications in the first quarter of the year. Immigration Minister, Sean Fraser, implemented this goal as part of IRCC’s measures to “improve client experience and modernize the immigration system”.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, frustration among immigration applicants mounted as processing times rose far beyond IRCC’s service standard. As waiting times surged, prospective newcomers also expressed dissatisfaction with the lack of transparency provided on their application status.
In response, the Government of Canada proposed $85 million toward reducing the processing time and modernizing the immigration system to allow for more transparent communication to applicants. As part of these measures, IRCC also provided a permanent residence case tracker for sponsorship applicants, which was launched in early February.
While Canada’s immigration department continues to improve its operations, at last, more people are receiving a response on their applications.
IRCC’s recent announcement offers a glimmer of hope to applicants long awaiting a decision on their application. With the streamlined processes implemented by IRCC, more and more applicants are receiving final decisions on their files. As Canada works toward clearing the permanent residency applicant backlog, people whose applications had been stuck in limbo since 2019 have reported significant movement on their files.
Canada’s immigration application movement is also good news for candidates in the Express Entry pool waiting to receive an invitation. Canada paused Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) draws in December 2020 in response to the travel restrictions in place due to COVID-19.
As the application backlog grew, IRCC took a step further, pausing all Federal High Skilled draws (incl. Canadian Experience Class, Federal Skilled Worker, and Provincial Nominee Program) since September 2021.
As IRCC makes headway on the backlog, Minister Fraser has revealed that FSW draws may resume as early as this spring.
In 2021, Canada welcomed over 405,000 new permanent residents – the highest number of newcomers ever admitted in a single year. The Canadian Government plans to welcome even more new permanent residents in 2022.
IRCC has started off strong in its first quarter, admitting new permanent residents at a rate consistent with Canada’s ambitious targets for the year.
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