Canada could see one million immigrants this year: report
March 2, 2023
The true level of foreign newcomers to Canada in 2023 could be more than double official targets, according to economist Benjamin Tal of CIBC Capital markets, which looked at the housing demand linked to immigration.
In a January 25, 2023, research paper Tal noted Canada will officially welcome 465,000 immigrants in 2023.
“We suggest the actual increase in housing demand was notably stronger than official published figures due to a growing share of permanent residents and non-permanent residents who arrive from outside Canada,” Tal stated.
Permanent residents and non-permanent resident (NPR) arrivals from outside Canada in 2022 amounted to an estimated 955,000 people, “representing an unprecedented swing in housing demand in a single year,” Tal noted.
About 340,000 Ukrainian visa holders from 2022 have not arrived in Canada, while most of the 300,000 Ukrainian visa applicants remain outstanding and are not yet processed. A large share of these is likely to be approved in early 2023, making many newcomers eligible to arrive in Canada at any time.
Moreover, there is an exponentially larger gap between visa issuances and actual arrivals in 2022. The estimated 1.4 million visas issued to those residing outside of Canada increased by 180 per cent from the level seen in 2021.
Also, recently proposed plans by the government to reduce eligibility rules for visitors will likely add notably to demand for residential housing, Tal stated.
“It is not a stretch to suggest that the number of new international arrivals in 2023 might reach one million. This kind of inflow suggests that existing policy tools will easily fall short of addressing the current and future increase in housing demand,” Tal concluded.