Feds to maintain immigration target for 2026

Current policy aims to support Canadian labour market, says immigration minister

Feds to maintain immigration target for 2026

The federal government has said that it will be keeping its immigration goal of 500,000 new permanent residents in 2026.

This followed several upward adjustments to the target over the past few years, from just under 300,000 new arrivals in 2015 to 465,000 people in 2023 and then to 500,000 by 2025.

Immigration minister Marc Miller said that the time is ripe to consider whether further upward revisions should be made to the target.

“Those numbers were needed but now we have to take a look at them, where we feel they're reasonable and plateauing in a space where we think it makes sense,” he said, as reported by CBC News.

“We have a lot of complex calculations that we need to make and measures we need to adjust. I think it’s sometimes politically convenient to come out with a hammer-type approach… It’s more on the level of finer surgery that we need to adjust.”

Canada’s current immigration policy is focused on supporting an aging labour market, while at the same time not inflicting undue pressures on the housing and health care sectors.

“What Canadians are telling us, what economists are telling us, is that we have to dive into the micro-economic impacts of immigration,” Miller said.

Housing issues not a major factor in current immigration policy

Miller assured that even as the immigration target will be frozen due to persistent supply issues in the housing market, this was not the major factor in the policy.

“If that were the sole reason, it would totally be misunderstanding the challenges I think we’re facing as a country,” Miller said.

Housing minister Sean Fraser said recently that addressing supply issues would be core to making a truly effective immigration policy.

“It's important that when we’re looking at the answer to our housing challenges, we also focus on what we can do to increase the supply,” Fraser said. “I think it’s essential that we remember that immigration remains one of Canada’s strongest competitive advantages in the global economy.”