The Canadian government foresees a massive increase in the number of immigrants, with a target of 500,000 arrivals per year by 2025.
Immigration Minister Sean Fraser said yesterday that these new thresholds are necessary to ensure Canada’s economic prosperity as the country grapples with a labor shortage.
About one million jobs are vacant in the North American country, according to the latest figures from Statistics Canada.
The government’s plan emphasizes economic immigration, based on applicants’ professional skills or work experience.
“Our plan emphasizes economic growth,” Fraser said at an event in North Toronto.
“By the third year of this plan [in 2025], 60% of new immigrants will be admitted under the economic class,” he said.
On the other hand, Ottawa foresees an overall decrease in the number of refugees welcomed into the country, and a more moderate increase for family reunification.
The minister’s remarks come days after Statistics Canada reported that a record 23% of the country’s people were landed immigrants or permanent residents, the highest percentage on record and the highest among the countries of the G7.