A decrease in newcomers and an increase in deaths made Canada witness its lowest population growth rate since 1916.
Last year, the country’s population went up by barely 0.4%. The population growth for Canada has never been this low since WW1. At that time, it was 0.3%
By the end of last year, the population of Canada had gone up by around 149,000. This made the total population count for the nation slide up marginally past the 38 million marks.
Last year saw an increase in the total number of deaths across Canada. Around 5% of the total deaths were due to the recent global pandemic.
It was for the first time in Canadian history that the death toll went past the 300,000 marks.
In 2020, 58% of the total population was due to immigration. In any typical year, this number shoots up to 80%. Travel restrictions and various other Covid-19 measures last year brought the number of newcomers in Canada to its lowest. It is the lowest since 1998.
In 2019, close to 86% of the nation’s population growth was due to immigrants. In 2020, this number fell by almost half.
Last year saw Canada lose more than 86,000 of its temporary residents. This is the most significant net loss in the country’s record.
The sole reason for this loss is a decrease in the number of study and work permit holders.
Increase in Immigration Levels to Compensate For the 2020 Slump
During the fall of last year, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino had made an announcement. He said that Canada would increase its target for immigration to 1.2 million in the next three years.
This year, the country is targeting to allow 401,000 immigrants.
This increase in immigration targets will be the perfect answer to the low levels of newcomers allowed last year. Canada is still dependent on its immigrants since it will enable them to address its demographic challenges.
These challenges include a low birth rate and an ageing labour force.
As the current travel restrictions may continue in the days to come, the Liberal government is giving its newcomers importance. These immigrants are already in Canada to fulfil the target for the 2021 immigration levels.
According to Mendicino, immigration levels are stabilizing in January. This will help Canada be on track to meets its immigration goal.
The Canadian government’s primary strategy is to invite more newcomers to apply for a PR through the Express Entry (EE) system. EE is not an immigration program but an electronic system that manages various immigration applications.
The steps for the EE include:
- Submission of a profile to the system.
- Receiving a score.
- Receiving an invitation to apply for permanent residence.
Candidates receive an invitation based on their eligibility for any of the several programs. The EE manages all of these programs.
This year, only Canadian Experience Class eligible Express Entry candidates have received an invitation to apply. Recipients of PNP nominations have also received invitations.
There has been an increase in the processing capacity for family class immigration. These types of immigrations are getting processed at the Case Processing Center in Sydney, Nova Scotia.
This will help IRCC get back to its one-year processing standard for spousal sponsorship applications.
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