Canada has released its 2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan and has set its targets high to grow the economy. The goal is to exponentially increase the number of immigrants and welcome 465,000 permanent residents in 2023, 485,000 in 2024, and 500,000 in 2025. The plan also focuses on filling labour shortages in key sectors and increasing regional immigration.
Last year, the country welcomed more than 405,000 newcomers – the most we’ve ever accepted in a single year. Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, has shared the approach for the next three years. “This immigration levels plan will help businesses find the workers they need, set Canada on a path that will contribute to our long-term success, and allow us to make good on key commitments to vulnerable people fleeing violence, war, and persecution,” he says.
Highlights of the 2023-2025 Immigration 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 haven to those facing persecution, including by expanding the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot
Plans to strengthen immigration and fill labour shortages in key sectors
Immigration accounts for almost 100% of Canada’s labour force growth, and by 2032, it’s projected to account for 100% of Canada’s population growth. With the Canadian economy currently facing critical labour market shortages, the 2023–2025 Immigration Levels Plan embraces immigration as a strategy to help businesses find workers. The focus is also on attracting the skills required in critical sectors—including health care, skilled trades, manufacturing, and technology—to manage the social and economic challenges Canada will face in the decades ahead.