The Canadian economy has experienced one of the fastest recoveries from COVID-19 among advanced economies but is now facing critical labour market shortages causing uncertainty for Canadian businesses and workers.
Today the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, released Canada’s 2023–2025 Immigration Levels Plan.
The plan embraces immigration as a strategy to help businesses find workers and to attract the skills required in key sectors—including health care, skilled trades, manufacturing and technology—to manage the social and economic challenges Canada will face in the decades ahead.
Last year Canada welcomed over 405,000 newcomers – the most we’ve ever welcomed in a single year.
The Government is continuing that ambition by setting targets in the new levels plan of 465,000 permanent residents in 2023, 485,000 in 2024 and 500,000 in 2025. The plan also focuses on attracting newcomers to different regions of the country, including small towns and rural communities.
Highlights of the levels plan include
- a long-term focus on economic growth, with just over 60% of admissions in the economic class by 2025
- using new features in the Express Entry system to welcome newcomers with the required skills and qualifications in sectors facing acute labour shortages such as, health care, manufacturing, building trades and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math)
- increases in regional programs to address targeted local labour market needs, through the Provincial Nominee Program, the Atlantic Immigration Program, and the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot
- reuniting more families faster
- ensuring that at least 4.4% of new permanent residents outside Quebec are Francophone
- support for global crises by providing a safe haven to those facing persecution, including by expanding the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot
With a focus on regional immigration, this plan builds on ongoing work to strengthen our immigration system and spread the benefits of immigration to communities across the country, including supporting the vitality of Francophone communities outside of Quebec.
Regional economic immigration programs, like the Provincial Nominee Program, are increasingly important to the sustainable growth of our country. That’s why this year’s plan outlines year-over-year growth so that we can continue to support provinces and territories in attracting the skilled newcomers they need to address the labour shortage and demographic challenges in their regions.
Over the past year, we’ve made improvements to address key challenges faced by those using the immigration system. We are continuing to streamline and digitalize our immigration system to further expedite processing and give users the experience they expect and deserve.
This plan helps cement Canada’s place among the world’s top destinations for talent, creating a strong foundation for continued economic growth while also reuniting family members with their loved ones and fulfilling Canada’s humanitarian commitments.