Posted on - Sep 15, 2014

By Victor Ing

Victor Ing

In a news release published in August, 2014, Citizenship and Immigration (CIC) Minister Chris Alexander announced that Canada had welcomed 150,000 new citizens in 2014. Since 2006 Canada has welcomed over 1,300,000 new Canadians.

From 2006 to date Canada has enjoyed the highest sustained levels of immigration in its history. In a 2013 report to Parliament, Minister Alexander announced that for the eighth consecutive year, Canada planned to admit between 240,000 and 265,000 permanent residents in Canada in 2014. This is an important issue to consider, given that most permanent residents in Canada go on to apply for Canadian citizenship. Accordingly to a 2011 Census, about 86% of permanent residents went on to become Canadian citizens.

By far, the largest groups of new permanent residents admitted to Canada each year are economic immigrants who qualify under diverse immigration programs that include the Skilled Worker, Canadian Experience Class, Skilled Trades and the Live-In Caregiver programs.   After economic immigrants, the second largest groups of new permanent residents are family class immigrants under Canada’s policy of family reunification. These immigrants include spouses, dependant children, parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens or permanent residence under Canada’s sponsorship programs. Together, these two broad categories of immigrants accounted for approximately 88% of permanent residents admitted in 2013 (57% economic immigrants and 31% family class). The remaining permanent residents to Canada are made up of other categories such as refugees, and applicants approved on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.

Many Canadians may not be aware of the actual immigration levels in Canada, despite the consistent levels of immigration planned by CIC year after year. However, CIC is keenly aware that these are important issues to be considered by the Canadian public. How many immigrants should be allowed in Canada every year? What mix of immigration categories should be admitted? What is the best mix for the Canadian economy? To help answer these questions, CIC ran an online consultation between June and August in 2013 with Canadian stakeholders to obtain public feedback on the appropriate levels of immigration to Canada. A report on the results of the consultation is expected to be made available by CIC by winter of this year.

Whatever the results of the consultation, it will be worth noting whether feedback from Canadians will actually be reflected in CIC policy. We have already seen that CIC is not afraid to make changes when it identifies a problem and a need for change in the name of a faster and more responsive immigration system. Over the past several years, CIC has introduced many reforms that have dramatically changed the entire immigration portfolio, including both economic and family class immigrants alike. These include introducing application caps and language requirements for economic programs and reducing the age of dependency to limit the sponsorship of children to Canada.   What is certain is that we can expect more change in the near future as the Canadian government continues to work towards modernizing the Canadian immigration system to support Canada’s economy and its national interests.


Victor Ing is a Vancouver immigration lawyer at Sas & Ing Immigration Law Centre in Vancouver, BC Canada, and provides a full range of immigration services.

To learn more about immigrating to Canada, becoming a permanent Canadian resident or bringing your family to Canada, email Victor Ing or call him at 1-604-689-5444.

Share this article:

Related Topics: , , , , ,

Related Posts

Minister Kenney Tackles Marriage Fraud with Changes to Spousal Sponsorship Criteria On October 25, 2012, Minister Kenney implemented new legislation aimed at targeting marriage fraud. The new spousal sponsorship provisions provide that couples who have been in a spousal relationship for less than two years or that do not have children to...
Canada implements fast-track processing for international students On June 8, 2018, the Honorable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) introduced Canada’s new Student Direct Stream (SDS) program which fast tracks study permit applications for international students from China, Ind...
You’ve been Invited to Apply! What’s next for a BC PNP Business Applicant? As we learned in our last issue, the new BC PNP Entrepreneur immigration stream now has a scoring system that allows PNP officers to select only the highest scoring applicants and provide them with an Invitation to Apply ( ITA).
Canada’s Express Entry Immigration Program: Two Years in Review and What Lies Ahead for 2017 When Canada's new immigration program, Express Entry, was introduced on January 1, 2015, it completely transformed Canada's economic immigration stream.  Gone were the days where an applicant controlled their own destiny!
Immigration Minister Promises Faster Processing Times for Families in 2017 The Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC) has been busy making changes to Canada’s family reunification programs in December. In consecutive weeks during this holiday season the Minister has announced important changes to how sponsors...
Investor Immigration Program to be back in Business! The past few years have been tough ones for business persons seeking to access Canada's Business Immigration program. On July 1, 2011 the Entrepreneur category was suspended and on July 1, 2012 so was the Investor program. On February 11, 2014 the Governm...