Prepared by Samuel Francis Gills; Shreeya A Pal; Edited by Veronica Laurent on January 12, 2022

Canada’s travel restrictions are being updated on a regular basis due to the pandemic. It has also resulted in longer application queues and a shift in Canadian policy to prioritise candidates from within the country. Despite the pandemic, Canada’s government has remained committed to its three-pronged immigration policy goals of boosting the economy, reuniting families, and supporting those in need. The following is an overview of major Canadian immigration developments in 2022.

Immigration Levels Plan 2022-2024 and 2023-2025:

In 2022, Canada is expected to get two immigration-level plan announcements. The plans will define Canada’s goals for new permanent residents and the programs under which the newcomers can apply for. Canada plans to accept 411,000 new immigrants in 2022 and 421,000 new immigrants in 2023 under the immigration levels plan 2021-2023. By February 10, 2022, Fraser will present the new immigration levels plan. According to Canada’s immigration minister Sean Fraser, the new plan might have even greater targets for 2022 and 2023.

The express entry program: Following what has been perhaps the most exceptional year for Express Entry since its inception in 2015, the coming year is set to see even more significant developments in the Express Entry program. Express Entry draws only invited Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) candidates in 2021. Since CEC candidates are mainly based in Canada and hence less likely to face COVID-related disruption throughout the permanent residence landing process, IRCC invited more CEC candidates which helped to meet its objective of landing 401,000 new immigrants in 2021. The IRCC’s rationale for continuing to invite PNP candidates is to assist provinces in achieving their labour market objectives through immigration.

Reforms planned for express-entry programs: The federal government has made various statements hinting that Express Entry reforms are on the way. The federal government had announced a proposal in budget 2021 to give the immigration minister more flexibility in inviting Express Entry candidates who fit Canada’s labour market criteria.

Expectations for 2022:

  • TEER System to Replace NOC Skill Levels: IRCC and Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) will classify jobs using the new Training, Education, Experience, and Responsibilities (TEER) system by fall 2022. Stakeholders will receive guidance from IRCC and ESDC prior to the amendments.
  • Applications for citizenship: The mandate letter reaffirms the government’s promise to make Canadian citizenship applications free, a promise made in 2019 before the pandemic prompted Canada to refocus its immigration objectives. All citizenship applicants, including families, will be able to submit their applications online, according to the IRCC.
  • Trusted employer system: The Canadian government has been considering implementing a Trusted Employer system for the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP). This would allow trusted employers to use the TFWP to fill job vacancies more swiftly. Fraser’s mandate letter lists the launch of this program as a top priority.
  • Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP) 2022: The Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP) 2022 has yet to be announced by the IRCC. Canada will continue to seek 23,500 immigrants under the PGP in the following year.

Check out Owlspriority Immigration’s Canada Settlement Resources to learn more about ways to find a new job in Canada, making your initial days in Canada stress-free and confident, etc.

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