Canada’s new permanent admissions dropped off in July, halting the immigration recovery seen since the start of the coronavirus crisis.
The latest federal government figures show 13,645 new permanent residents were admitted during the month, nearly 30 percent down on the 19,180 admissions in June.
July’s figures are also dramatically down on the same month of 2019 when 36,615 new permanent residents were admitted.
New ‘arrivals’ can either be candidates already in Canada transitioning from a temporary status, or those from overseas who were approved before March 18.
Figures for the first seven months of the year show Canada has now fallen well behind its target of 341,000 new permanent resident arrivals in 2020.
Between January and July, Canada welcomed 117,075 new immigrants, down from 196,845 in the same period of 2019.
The drop off in numbers have all come since March, when coronavirus restrictions fully took hold, with 47,905 newcomers welcomed in 2020, compared to 130,890 in 2019.
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Restrictions on international travel are in place until at least the end of September, as the federal government looks to guard against a disastrous second wave of COVID-19 infections.
The current closure of the Canada-U.S. border is in place until September 21. It has already been extended several times since it was initially imposed in March.
The restrictions bar entry to all except citizens and permanent residents, with some exemptions.
Canada currently has exemptions in place for the following people, provided they are travelling for a non-discretionary reason.
- Seasonal agricultural workers, fish/seafood workers, caregivers and all other temporary foreign workers.
- International students who held a valid study permit, or had been approved for a study permit, when the travel restrictions took effect on March 18, 2020.
- Permanent resident applicants who had been approved for permanent residence before the travel restrictions were announced on March 18, 2020, but who had not yet travelled to Canada.
- Immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents are also exempt if entering to be with an immediate family member for at least 15 days.