Canada’s attitude towards immigrants and attempts to keep the immigration process going was recently reiterated by the immigration minister Marco Mendicino.
Canada has a history of welcoming immigrants and its immigration policies are designed to help the country’s economic growth. The minister said that immigration will be the key to the success and economic recovery of Canada post the Coronavirus crisis. Immigrants are expected to contribute to the country’s economic growth in the future.
Mendicino said that the country will need immigrants for economic growth because the worker to retiree ratio is declining and with baby boomers in the country set to retire a few years from now, local employers will be competing to hire qualified immigrants. This will result in better employment opportunities and salaries for immigrants.
IRCC continues to operate
The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is trying to provide uninterrupted immigration services for those who are in the process of applying for a Canadian visa or intend to apply for one. The IRCC is working remotely and continues to process visa applications.
Temporary foreign workers are welcome
The Canadian government is issuing visas in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) system in a bid to keep the economy running and to support Canadian workers during this pandemic.
In order to support Canadian industries such as agriculture, agri-food, food processing and trucking, it has agreed to continue its TFWP category.
The Canadian government realizes the contribution of international students to the economy. There are more than 620,000 international students in the country who contribute around 22 billion dollars to the economy annually.
To mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on international students, the government has introduced some special measures for them and for students who will come to the country soon.
International students who wish to extend their Stay in Canada during the present crisis are now eligible for an implied status. This allows them to continue to stay in Canada till their request for extension of stay is approved.
More working hours: The IRCC allows international students to work only for 20 hours per week during their course. However, due to COVID-19 these restrictions were lifted and now these students can work for more than 20 hours per week till the end of August. They are allowed these extended work hours in ten priority sectors which include:
- Energy and utilities
- Information and Communication Technologies
CERB payment: The Canadian government has launched the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) which will provide financial support of up to 500 dollars per week to those affected by the pandemic. International students can also receive the CERB benefit provided they meet the eligibility criteria.
PGWP: The Post-Graduation Work Permit or PGWP is crucial for international students to gain the Canadian work experience which is a significant factor when applying for Canadian permanent residence. The IRCC has announced that students beginning their study program in May or June can start their program online without affecting their eligibility to apply for a PGWP.
Canada continues to amend its immigration policies to continue the intake of immigrants and support those already staying in Canada. The immigration reforms will help the country count on the contribution of immigrants for its economic growth post the Coronavirus pandemic.
Canada government keen to continue immigration friendly policies
Posted on May 8, 2020