Weekly Canadian Immigration News Review September 18 – 24 2023


A founding partner of Abramovich & Tchern and a skilled litigator, Lev focuses exclusively on immigration and refugee law. His immigration practice is focused on complex corporate and personal immigration and refugee law matters.
canada immigration news

Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers present a weekly news review on Canadian immigration matters. This news review provides valuable updates and insights into the latest developments in immigration policies and regulations in Canada.

Canada Held The First Express Entry Draw For Skilled Newcomers Working In Transport Occupations

On September 18, 2023, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced the first draw in the Express Entry system for newcomers with work experience in transportation occupations. On September 20, 2023, the Canadian Government conducted the first draw specifically for transportation occupations and issued 1,000 Invitations to Apply (ITA) to candidates in these highly demanded occupations. So far, Canada has issued a total of 81,948 ITAs under Express Entry in 2023. 

Canada aims to address labour shortages and support economic goals by inviting skilled newcomers with work experience in transport occupations, such as commercial truck drivers, pilots, and aircraft assembly workers, to apply for permanent residence. Focusing on specific work experience or French language ability will help fill key positions and contribute to the nation’s economic growth. The Government of Canada will hold category-based selection rounds throughout the year, alongside general and program-specific invitation rounds, reaffirming Canada’s commitment to attracting top global talent and meeting transport workers’ needs.

International Organizations Call On The Government Of Canada To Help Foreign Workers

Migrants, including individuals without legal documentation, students, and refugees, organized marches in cities across Canada to advocate for permanent residency for all before the federal parliament reconvenes. In Toronto, protesters marched downtown, resulting in traffic delays. They are calling for an uncapped program that would grant permanent residence to all migrants, including those who entered the country illegally. This protest comes in response to criticism from a United Nations expert who described Canada’s temporary foreign worker program as resembling forms of slavery. The UN Special Rapporteur on Modern Forms of Slavery has urged the government to establish a longer-term or permanent pathway to residency for all temporary foreign workers. 

In addition, the Government of Canada is facing a class-action lawsuit for allegedly violating the Charter Rights of migrant domestic and farm workers. The lawsuit aims to challenge the immigration regulations that restrict workers’ rights to change employers. The Association for the Rights of Household and Farm Workers has filed the case on behalf of closed work permit holders, seeking to abolish the system that treats workers as the property of their employers. The lawsuit claims that these employer-tying measures are discriminatory based on race, national origin, and colour. Migrant workers with closed work permits experience limitations in their professional flexibility, as they cannot work in Canada if they lose their employment until they find another employer authorized to hire foreign workers.

Ontario Held Three OINP Draws In A Week

Ontario conducted three Ontario Immigration Nominee Program (OINP) draws over the past week. On September 19, 2023, the OINP invited 537 applicants for the Masters Graduate stream with a minimum score of 41 points. Also, on the same day, Ontario invited 71 candidates for the PhD Graduate Stream with a minimum score of 40 points. In addition, on September 21, 2023, the OINP held the seventh round of invitations for the Express Entry French-Speaking Skilled Worker stream, issuing 63 Invitations to Apply for Francophone candidates. In 2023, the province invited 32,990 candidates through the regular OINP draws.

The OINP allows the province of Ontario to nominate individuals for permanent residency based on their skills and work experience. It also attracts and retains skilled workers who can contribute to Ontario’s economy and address specific labour market needs. Through various immigration streams, the OINP provides opportunities for individuals to apply for provincial nomination and obtain permanent residency in Canada. If you are also interested in immigrating to Canada through the OINP, Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers can help. Contact us for more information.

Canada To Tackle Housing Crisis And Rising Grocery Prices

On September 14, 2023, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made a significant announcement regarding new measures to tackle the ongoing housing crisis and the increasing prices of groceries. These initiatives aim to address the pressing concerns Canadians face across the country. One of the key aspects of the plan is the expansion of rental accommodations. The government plans to encourage the construction of more rental dwellings to meet the growing demand for affordable housing. Additionally, they will introduce a refund program for new rental homes, making it easier for Canadians to find suitable and affordable housing options. 

To tackle the rising grocery prices, the government will take proactive measures. They have scheduled meetings with the heads of grocery chains to discuss ways to stabilize costs and ensure Canadians can access affordable food options. Furthermore, the government is considering implementing tax measures and promoting competition within the grocery sector to reduce prices and alleviate the burden on Canadians’ wallets. By taking a comprehensive approach and implementing various estimates, the government aims to improve Canadians’ living conditions and financial well-being nationwide.

British Columbia Continues Inviting New Candidates Under The BCPNP 

British Columbia actively invites skilled individuals through the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) to contribute to its vibrant economy and diverse communities. Under the BCPNP, British Columbia regularly conducts draws inviting candidates from various immigration categories, such as the Skilled Worker, International Graduate, and Entrepreneur streams. On September 19, 2023, the provincial government held new draws and invited 147 candidates in the general draw, 51 early childhood educators (NOC 42202), and 27 healthcare professionals. Including the latest draw, British Columbia invited 7,643 candidates in 2023.

British Columbia continues to welcome new candidates under the BCPNP, inviting skilled individuals worldwide to contribute to its prosperous communities. If you are considering immigrating to Canada and want to explore the opportunities in British Columbia, the BCPNP might be the right pathway. Feel free to contact Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers to get professional guidance and support throughout the application process. Our immigration lawyers can assist you in understanding the eligibility requirements, preparing your application, and maximizing your chances of success.

Canadians Are Unhappy About PGP 2023 Unavailability Of New Sponsors

Most Canadians had high hopes that the Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP) would finally open its doors to new sponsors in 2023. Unfortunately, their expectations were shattered when the program remained closed to new participants. The new round of the PGP is set to open on October 10, 2023, and it will invite 24,200 prospective sponsors to apply. IRCC has set a target of accepting 15,000 complete applications for the program. It is important to note that PGP 2023 is not open to new sponsors; it only considers sponsors who applied in 2020, marking the third consecutive year of this selection process. 

Looking at Canada’s Immigration Levels Plan for 2023, the country aims to welcome 465,000 new permanent residents. This includes a specific allocation of 28,500 spots for parents and grandparents. However, the government has even more ambitious plans for the coming years. By 2025, Canada plans to increase its target to 500,000 newcomers, with 36,000 spots explicitly reserved for parents and grandparents. These plans reflect the continued efforts of Canada to attract and accommodate a diverse range of immigrants, including the vital role that parents and grandparents play in family reunification and community building.

The Canadian Job Market Is Still Tighter Than Pre-COVID-19 

According to the latest report from Statistics Canada, the Canadian job market experienced a slight decline in the second quarter of 2023. This decline can be attributed to a decrease in job vacancies and an increase in the number of unemployed individuals by 44,300. As a result, the unemployment-to-job vacancy ratio rose from 1.3 in the previous quarter to 1.4 in the second quarter of 2023. It is important to note that despite this softening, the current ratio remains relatively tight compared to pre-COVID levels. Before the pandemic, the ratio typically exceeded 2.0, whereas it currently stands at 1.4.

In addition to the changes in job vacancies and unemployment figures, wage growth in Canada also showed signs of deceleration during the second quarter of 2023. Average hourly wages increased by 4.4% year-over-year, a decrease from the 5% growth observed in the previous quarter. Overall, while the Canadian job market experienced a slight decline and a deceleration in wage growth during the second quarter of 2023, it is essential to consider that these changes still reflect a relatively tight job market compared to pre-pandemic levels.

Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers specialize in assisting individuals with the immigration process to Canada. Whether you are looking to immigrate for work, study, reunite with family, or seek refuge, Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers can assess your eligibility, advise on the most suitable immigration programs, and guide you through each step of the process. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and start your journey toward a new life in Canada.

Lev Abramovich

A founding partner of Abramovich & Tchern and a skilled litigator, Lev focuses exclusively on immigration and refugee law. His immigration practice is focused on complex corporate and personal immigration and refugee law matters.