Canada was set to break immigration records in 2020. But only days after releasing its 2020–22 immigration levels plan, the federal government announced travel restrictions to help contain the spread of COVID-19. COVID-19 has hurt immigration levels, but recovery is under way. By December 2020, permanent resident admissions had dropped by 56 per cent and temporary admissions by 33 per cent, an improvement from earlier in the pandemic.
Counting on Immigration: Assessing COVID-19’s Impact and Planning for the Future focuses on the pandemic’s effect on admissions and settlement patterns to help stakeholders respond effectively. In October 2020, the government announced a new plan to bring more immigrants to Canada over the next three years to offset low immigration levels and to fuel Canada’s post-pandemic economic recovery and long-term economic prosperity. The second part of the research models the economic implications of different immigration levels scenarios in the short and long term.