’Revenue losses, project delay’: How immigration is crucial for rebuilding Canadian economy

  • About 94% of organizations cancelled or delayed projects as a result of processing delays. For 55% of organizations, the delays are resulting revenue losses, a report cited

Livemint
Updated10 Aug 2022
Several companies and academic institutions in Canada are complaining that delays by the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in visa processing time and aiding the immigrants to come to the country are affecting them negatively
Several companies and academic institutions in Canada are complaining that delays by the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in visa processing time and aiding the immigrants to come to the country are affecting them negatively

Amid the growing labour shortage in several sectors in Canada, the country has initiated processes to invite a record number of immigrants to apply for permanent residency to fill up those vacant posts. Amid this, several companies and academic institutions are complaining that delays in visa processing time by the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) are affecting them negatively. As many of them said, ‘immigration is crucial for rebuilding Canadian economy’.

A recent survey by the Canadian Employee Relocation Council (CERC) noted that between June and July, the overall backlog of applicants at IRCC grew from 2.4 million to 2.7 million, a 12% increase. Over that same time, the backlog for temporary foreign workers grew by 21% from 408,733 to 493,746 applicants.

“This is driving up processing times well in excess of IRCC’s service standards.”

A total of 33 organizations responded to CERC's survey.

IRCC processing delays causing revenue losses 

The employers participating in the survey pointed out importance of international talent is crucial to business. “The contributions of international talent are important to our business.”

Among the employers, 97% hire international talent through work permit programs and 53% access economic immigration. Most, 90%, of participating organizations employ over 2,000 workers and 31% employ more than 10,000 workers.

They informed, “About 94% of organizations cancelled or delayed projects as a result of processing delays. For 55% of organizations, the delays are resulting revenue losses.” Meanwhile, 29% of universities reported that they are cancelling or postponing educational programs, as well as delays in research projects

International talent is crucial in rebuilding the Canadian economy

The CERC survey says the need for Canadian employers to access international talent on an expedited basis will be vitally important in rebuilding the Canadian economy in a post pandemic world. Experts also agree that immigration will be a key strategy in surviving a possible recession, the report stated

Meanwhile, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser’s mandate letter calls for him to reduce the application processing times, including to address delays that have been impacted by COVID-19. 

Noting the same, the minister informed that the processing times are expected to return to normal by the end of the calendar year. IRCC has made efforts to improve wait times for applicants by adding about 500 more staff to its 11,000 employees, as well as modernizing the immigration system. 

Plus, $827 million budget has been earmarked to digitize the current immigration system, plus an additional $85 million to speed up processing for certain lines of business, such as study permits, work permits, and PR card renewals.

 

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