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Canada’s Immigration Backlog Drops to 2.2 Million

Canada strives to clear the immigration backlog and reduces it to just 2.2 million, according to the latest figures.

The total inventories across all immigration categories stand at 2,243,097 as of December 2, 2022. The following figures represent inventories in individual categories:

  • Permanent Residence applications- 512,342
  • Temporary Residence applications- 1,416,125
  • Citizenship applications- 314,630

The inventories in Family Class categories dipped to 127,091 as of Dec 2, 2022, from 128,112 in November. The current inventories in Family Class programs are:

  • Spouses and partners- 62,106
  • Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP)- 53,770

Inventories across Express Entry and Provincial Nominee Programs

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada halted Express Entry Draws between Sep 2021 and Jul 2022 except for PNP draws. The move was to ease the mounting backlog of applications as IRCC struggled to process applications within service standards.

IRCC achieved Express Entry services standards of six months by halting Express Entry Invitations to Apply (ITAs) under the Canadian Experience Class and Federal Skilled Worker Program.   

The number of Express Entry applications on the waiting list as of Dec 2, 2022, was 43,226, against 39,589 in November. The applications for the Canadian Experience Class increased by 5000 over the previous month.

The combined PNP inventory is 62,343 applications as of December 2, 2022.

Managing the application backlog

IRCC strives to maintain application processing time (service standards) for all immigration categories. The backlog is the number of applications that are out of service standards. The goal is to process a minimum of 80 percent of applications within service standards. The following are examples of service standards:

  • Temporary residence applications- 60 to 120 days
  • Express Entry applications- 6 months
  • Spousal and family class sponsorship- Up to 12 months

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada expects to reduce the application backlog across all lines of businesses to less than 50 percent by March 2023. It started transitioning to 100 percent online applications for all Permanent Residence programs.

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