Earlier this month, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) released preliminary data about the number of permanent and temporary residents Canada welcomed in 2009. The figures show that Canada continues to maintain a historically high rate of immigration.
A total of 252,124 permanent residents arrived in Canada in 2009, more than half of which were economic immigrants (newcomers who immigrated through the Federal Skilled Worker program, a Provincial Nominee Program, the Quebec Skilled Worker category, and the Canadian Experience Class category).
“The Government of Canada is maintaining immigration levels to meet Canada’s short-, medium- and long-term economic needs, help offset our aging population and low birthrate, and sustain our workforce,” said Canadian Immigration Minister Jason Kenney
Kenney highlighted the benefits international students, many of whom choose to stay permanently in Canada through the various immigration options available to them, bring to the country.
“The number of foreign students who came to Canada grew by seven percent last year, resulting in the highest number of foreign students ever admitted to Canada. To be a more innovative society able to compete and prosper in a global, knowledge-based economy, Canada needs people with an international outlook, skills and experience. Attracting more international students is a priority for our government,” he said.
Even as Canada maintains its high rate of immigration, the federal government is currently reviewing the Federal Skilled Worker program with a view to modifying the 38 occupations that are currently “open” under the program. Applicants who currently qualify for a Canadian permanent resident visa would be wise to submit their applications as soon as possible, before any changes are announced.
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