İrem UZUN -TDO- Canada plans to bring in more than 1.2 million new immigrants over the next three years, the federal immigration minister said on Friday, as the country tries to fill gaps in its labor market and boost the economy, both hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking to reporters in Ottawa, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino said the federal government aims to accept 401,000 new permanent residents in 2021, another 411,000 in 2022 and then 421,000 in 2023.
“The key to both short-term recovery and long-term prosperity is immigration,” Mendicino told the press on Friday. He visibly beamed with pride as he announced the historic targets. He described it as a “vision to increase our numbers a little every year over the next three years.” Minister said that Canada needs the historic number of new immigrants to fill a shortage created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last year's plan promised to bring in more than one million immigrants over a three-year period, but the COVID-19 crisis and the resulting travel restrictions have slowed down the process. Mendicino said the government remains committed to welcoming newcomers as a means to keep Canada's economy afloat. “Travel restrictions and other constraints have led to a shortfall in admissions this year,” Mendocino highlighted as a key reason for the expanded targets.