Canadian Immigration News

What Can Affect Canadian Immigration in 2021?

3.3 minute read
"As the year progresses, everyone is trying to anticipate how Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will meet the Immigration Levels target for 2021. However, the Canadian immigration levels for the rest of 2021 depend less on what IRCC does and more on how the political and social climate of Canada recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic."
Written by My Visa Source Team
Published on:  Jun 22, 2021
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As the year progresses, everyone is trying to anticipate how Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will meet the Immigration Levels target for 2021. However, the Canadian immigration levels for the rest of 2021 depend less on what IRCC does and more on how the political and social climate of Canada recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The IRCC has made all the efforts to help the Canadian immigration system adapt to the new challenges of an ongoing global pandemic. The two things that will affect the trajectory of the Canadian immigration levels in the remainder of 2021 are Canada’s ability to effectively contain and defeat the Covid-19 virus and Prime Minister Trudeau’s decision on whether to carry out a federal election this fall. 

What Is the Current Covid-19 Situation in Canada?

Canada’s immigration system was disrupted last year in March 2020 as the Covid-19 virus spread throughout the world. Since then, every immigration decision has been made keeping in mind the disruptions caused by the global pandemic. This has led the IRCC to shift many immigration programs on a digital platform and has introduced new policy changes to meet the immigration target of inviting over 401,000 new residents in 2021. 

As the third wave caused the implementation of fresh lockdowns in Ontario, Quebec and Alberta, new Covid-19 infections have reduced nationally after Canada recovered from having 10,000 daily new cases in April. This is a direct result of Canada’s vaccination policy and stricter public health measures. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently announced that over 40% of the eligible population has received at least one dose of the vaccine. This brings Canada alongside the top five countries that have managed to effectively vaccinate their population. 

It is expected that Canada will receive over 20 million more doses of the vaccine ensuring that some level of normalcy will be restored this summer. This will drastically affect the immigration estimates of the government as they will be able to send invitations to overseas applicants instead of just focusing on transitioning temporary residents.

Will Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Allow a Federal Election?

Press reports suggest that if Canada manages to execute its vaccination drive as expected, then a federal election could be conducted this fall. If the vaccination drive is successfully implemented and the projected results achieved, the public support for Prime Minister Trudeau will increase substantially, propelling him to a third term in office. In 2015, Trudeau’s government was successful in securing a majority, however, in 2019, his public support fell drastically, resulting in him obtaining a minority government. However, he remains one of the most popular leaders in Canadian federal politics and is well-positioned to receive a majority, if the election is held.

Since election campaigns in Canada are rarely held up till Christmas due to the importance of the winter holidays, it is expected that an announcement would be made about the elections by September at least. While an election announcement would have little to no effect on things like the immigration levels plan or programs like the Express Entry or Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP), it will still affect the government’s response to emerging issues and implementation of new policies and programs.

What Can be Expected in the Future for Canadian Immigration?

Canada’s ability to shift focus from transitioning temporary residents to inviting applicants from overseas will depend on the success of its vaccination drive. The same can be said for allowing applicants who have received their Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) to enter the country. The first major indication of Canada’s intention of opening up its border will be its willingness to lift border restrictions for travelers from the United States.

Until the border restrictions are lifted, the main focus of Express Entry draws will remain the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) applicants. These programs facilitate the transition of temporary residents who are currently residing in Canada to permanent residents. To encourage more of these transitions, Canada also introduced a new temporary public policy that will offer 6 immigration streams to foreign workers and international graduates.

Other upcoming things to look out for include the Municipal Nominee Program (MNP), the waiver for the fee for Canadian citizenship applications, the Parent and Grandparents Sponsorship Program 2021 and the Immigration Levels Plan for 2022-24.

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