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COVID-19: Will Immigration be the Key to Canada’s Economic Recovery?

Since 2015, Canada has attracted the brightest from all around the world through its ambitious long term immigration plan and modified express entry plan to attract highly skilled global professionals to aid Canada’s Economy.

The COVID-19 or Coronavirus Pandemic has had a devastating impact on the global economy. According to the projections made by the International Monetary fund (IMF) this is the worst economic decline since the Great Depression.

This begs the question; Should Canada welcome more Immigrants?

Canada was set to welcome more than 1 million immigrants in the next three years (2020-2022). Due to the current Pandemic situation and the new travel restrictions imposed, this question is on the minds of many.

Canada will only damage its economy by reducing the number of immigration levels, however, due to the current situation, this will require Canada to adjust its immigration plan.

Canada’s desire to welcome 390,000+ immigrants is to help & aid their growing economic standards, as well as alleviate their demographic challenges.

Immigration has been the driver for Canada’s population growth since the 1990s and will be the sole driver until the 2030s.

Why does Canada require so many Immigrants?

Canada has one of the world’s lowest birth rates (1.50 births per woman in 2017). They also have one of the world’s oldest populations. As the old retire, Canada’s urgency for the young and skilled to aid their economy only keeps growing.

There are two effective ways to grow an economy, by adding more workers and using those workers efficiently and productively. In Canada’s case, population growth is more important as it will fuel the labor force.

How does immigrants help the Economy in COVID-19 & will the Canadian Economy see a full recovery?

Canada’s economy pre-coronavirus is very informative to let us know what to expect once the preventive measures have been removed.

Yes, it is understandable that Canada’s economy is facing tough situations but it is also important to keep in mind the pivotal impact Immigration has had on Canada’s economy.

Statistics have shown that Immigrants have a high tendency to start a business in Canada.
According to Statistics Canada, new immigrant entrepreneurs have created 25% of new private-sector jobs between 2003-2013.

Immigrants bring with them sufficient savings which help fuel the economic activity which is crucial to fuel job creation in Canada.

Consider the International students, According to the Federal Government, the 600,000 students in Canada contribute over $22 Billion each year which further supports approximately 200,000 Canadian jobs.

Canada has 8 million immigrants that make an even bigger contribution than the international students towards the economic activity of the country.

Will the Canadian Economy see a full recovery? According to a consensus amongst economists, Canadian and Global Economy will bounce back fairly once all the social distance measures have been removed. Canadians will return back to work and there will be newer job opportunities for immigrants post coronavirus.

Furthermore, leading up to COVID-19, the Canadian economy saw record-low unemployment rate and was flourishing since the 2008 global crisis, following which Canada has maintained high levels of Immigration.

Finally, it is realistic to expect Canada to deal with a shortage of workers, as all of Canada’s 9.6 million (3 out of 10 Canadians) baby boomers will reach their age of retirement within the next decade. Any shortage of workers in an expanding economy will benefit Canadian born workers and immigrants.

Canada’s Immigration Policy has always had long term economic implications and we should not lose sight of those in the wake of this on-going pandemic.