Fraser Assures Return of IRCC’s Visa Processing Time to Original Standards by 2023


Cyril Zachariah
Updated on May 13, 2022 02:45 PM IST

Sean Fraser in his recent statement clarified the intent of IRCC Canada to clear backlogs and return to its old standards of visa processing time by the year 2023. In his statement, he also highlighted the CAD 85 million grant and annual budget application plans of IRCC.

IRCC Prioritises Visa Processing in Canada Under its $85 Million Allocation

Latest Update (May 13, 2022) -Sean Fraser, Immigration Minister Canada, relayed IRCCs plans to recruit more staff and return to old standards of processing times by 2023 to the Canadian Parliaments Standing Committee. IRCC has already reduced the processing time for PR renewals from 120 days to 65 days.

He made his statement in the study meeting on IRCCs application backlogs and processing times, conducted by the Committee on Citizenship and Immigration. The committee has been set up to conduct studies on federal policy on immigration and multiculturalism and give suggestions accordingly.

Mr. Fraser relayed the future plans and actions of IRCC to the committee, and how the authority plans to use its CAD 827 million annual budget. The authority has plans to use the annual budget to digitise and transform the immigration scenario.

Mr. Fraser also hinted to the committee about plans on making forwarding changes to the Express Entry system as well. Deducing his statements these changes may benefit international students and temporary foreign workers to become PR in Canada.

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Source: CIC News

Seeing a positive turnover in the number of international students and immigrants still choosing Canada as go-to country for better opportunity, the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) has announced that it will work towards improving the visa processing times.

However, the effects of the pandemic have created huge supply chain challenges, stated Executive Director Randall Martin, British Columbia Council for International Education. He highlighted that the pent-up demand of student mobility from students and their families as well as eagerness of Canadian institutions to fill-up their classrooms for the past two years have resulted in severe supply-chain issues.

This combined with visa processing centres being overwhelmed by the sudden increase in supply and demand, as a result of several centres either being closed up due to COVID-19 or severely understaffed, across different countries and regions has further contributed to the visa processing delays in Canada.

Also Read: Canada Recorded Around 40,000 New Permanent Residents in July

As per current IRCC data, the total visa backlog in Canada amounts to 1.8 million immigration applications. Out of these total applications, 848,598 are classified as temporary residency applications. The IRCC, according to reports, received 112,185 study permit applications along with 26,479 applications for study permit extensions.

Canadas Immigration Minister, Sean Fraser, during a meeting with the Standing Committee on IRCC reassured his promise towards improving processing times, which had been worsened due to the pandemic, especially with the help of $85 million that have been allocated for the purpose.

He further reiterated that Canada would be able to resume normalcy in terms of service standards in work and study permits as well as proof of citizenship and permanent residency card renewals by the end of 2022. According to IRCC standards, Canadas visa processing times for work permits submitted outside the country was set at 60 days, excluding the International Experience Canada (IEC) work permit that had been set at 56 days. Meanwhile, it took 120 days to process work permit extensions submitted in Canada. Several media outlets reported that Canada was able to meet the deadlines over 87% of the times before the pandemic.

In his statements during the same Standing Committe meeting, IRCC Deputy Minister, Daniel Mills pointed out that even with the allocation of $85 million, the visa processing times for permanent residency applications will still remain unaffected. However, the allocation will bring in new electronic tools such as application systems and online application trackers. Reports also suggested that the agency expects an investment in additional staff to reduce the application inventories under the allocation.

Also Read: Canada Targets 1.3 Million Immigrants in the Next 3 Years

Concluding its statement, the IRCC stated that it remains committed to providing the best experience possible for those aspiring to build a future in Canada. It further added that the it prioritises timely service to clients through an integrated, modernised and centralised working environment so as to facilitate quicker application processing times.

The Canadian government acknowledges the importance of international students, not only to its educational institutions but also its own immigration strategy, since the country has been working hard to meet the demand for highly skilled and educated workforce required by its industries. This is further backed by the fact that nearly 900,000 job opening had been reported since last November, as per a Statistics Canada report.

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Source: The Economic Times; The PIENews; CICNews

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