Canadian province Ontario welcomed the highest number of new permanent residents to Canada in 2021, with more people moving there than in the six other provinces combined.
According to the most recent Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) data, Ontario welcomed 1,54,005 new permanent residents in the first ten months of 2021, accounting for about 49.1% of the total 3,13,880 new permanent residents to Canada during that time period.
This signifies that in the first ten months of this year, Ontario welcomed more newcomers than other provinces like Quebec, British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Nova Scotia combined.
As the year 2021 came to a close, the newly appointed Immigration Minister Sean Fraser said that Canada had met its ambitious goal of 4,01,000 new permanent residents by 2021.
The country has now set another ambitious target for the year 2022, with Ottawa establishing a 4,11,000-immigrant target for the coming year. The provincial government of Ontario appears to be steadfast in its commitment to relying on newcomers to help rebuild its economy in what will hopefully soon be a post-Covid-19 reality.
While the nation grappled with record-breaking Covid-19 case numbers as a result of the advent of the Omicron version in December, Ontario stated that it would strive to lure even more entrepreneurs to the province.
Through the Entrepreneur Stream of the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP), the province is recruiting 100 foreign entrepreneurs over the next two years to start or expand businesses in areas outside of the Greater Toronto Area that have been badly hit by pandemic job losses.
Every foreign entrepreneur will be expected to invest a minimum of $2,00,000 in their firm in order to start or build a business in towns that have suffered significant employment losses as a result of Covid-19.
“Communities across Ontario are looking for investment, and immigrants are looking for opportunities,” said Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy.
“Through Build Ontario, our government is working to bridge the gap between the two. Our government is working for workers, and laying a foundation for prosperity in every corner of our province.”
The Entrepreneur Stream of the OINP, which was formed in 2015, has received only two nominations so far, but the province is promising to better support entrepreneurs who submit and connect them with business possibilities. The province’s most recent announcement in December was well received by immigrant entrepreneurs in Ontario.
“I immigrated to Canada 50 years ago, and I am a proud Canadian citizen,” said Kacee Vasudeva, CEO of Maxtech Innovations. “Many years ago, with the help of the Ontario government, I started one of my businesses that have grown into a successful enterprise.“
“I want to congratulate the minister on announcing this new project today that will help many more international entrepreneurs start businesses like mine, create new jobs in small communities and settle in Ontario.”
During the first ten months of 2021, Ontario invited 165 new permanent residents through the Start-Up and Self-Employed business programs, as well as another 77,460 through the Canadian Experience, Caregiver, Economic Public Policy, Rural and Northern Immigration, Skilled Trade, and Skilled Worker economic programs.
Canada also permitted up to 90,000 temporary residents to gain permanent status in Canada through a special pathway in 2021 in a one-time move. This allowed Ontario to welcome an additional 5,990 new permanent residents in the first ten months of the year.
During that time, family sponsorship schemes brought in 27,740 new permanent residents, and the province also accepted 27,245 protected persons and refugees. In the future, Ontario hopes to remove impediments to employment for globally skilled immigrants.
Ontario proposed legislation in the month of October that to address its skills gap by removing many important obstacles faced by internationally trained immigrants, such as the stipulation for Canadian work experience when attempting to obtain a license in certain regulated professions and trades such as law, accounting, architecture, engineering, electrical, and plumbing.
The Atlantic Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador drew the lowest immigrants in the first ten months of 2021, with only 1,385 new permanent residents. Nunavut saw only 35 new permanent residents over a similar time, making it the Canadian territory with the lowest level of immigration.