Canada’s economic growth is under threat of losing momentum after border closures continued to remain in place due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Canadian immigration fell by 64 per cent in the second quarter of 2020, according to government data.
In the three months through to June, only 34,260 permanent residents were accepted into the country, which was a significant drop from last year’s 94,275 permanent residents in the same period.
This has been a massive blow to Canada’s immigration-focused population growth policy, which aims to expand the Canadian workforce and counter an aging demographic.
A decline in the arrival of new skilled migrants has taken a toll on the housing and labor markets in particular, which have been crucial pillars of an economy having weak export and business investments.
Travel restrictions were imposed after mid-March and continued to remain in place in the second quarter of 2020.
Despite the Canadian government still accepting new permanent residence applications, the ongoing pandemic has slowed processing times.
Moreover, the government is prioritising the processing of applications for Canadians returning from abroad, as well as essential services workers and vulnerable groups.
In the first half of 2020, Canada accepted 103,420 permanent residence applications, with the target being 341,000 approvals by the end of the year.