International students support the vitality of Canadian communities & contribute more than $21 billion annually to the economy. Due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic international students are facing a myriad of challenges. The Government of Canada has offered a variety of measures like open work permits for former international students with post-graduation work permits (PGWP) to tide over this issue.
The Honourable Marco E. L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Canada has announced further measures to ensure that international students won’t miss out on opportunities after they graduate due to the pandemic. Temporary changes to the PGWP Program implemented earlier in the pandemic are being extended and expanded. This is done to allow many international students to continue online learning from abroad for several more months.
International students can now complete their studies outside Canada but this still will count for a future PGWP. These measures apply to all international students enrolled in a PGWP-eligible program, and meet all other PGWP conditions.
As international students bring strong employment and language skills, strengthened by their Canadian education and work experience, they are generally well positioned to apply for PR status. In 2019, more than 58,000 graduates successfully applied to immigrate permanently in 2019. If they decide to stay in Canada, this will help to address the stark demographic challenges of the country.
As the world is braving the second wave of the pandemic, attracting skilled immigrants is a central part of the plan to chart a course for recovery. There are urgent needs to fill areas like healthcare, technology and more. This new policy will help more graduates to build their futures in Canada. As we look into the future, it will help even more former international students to aid the short-term recovery and long-term prosperity.
According to the hon’ble Minister, this new policy means that students hoping to work in Canada after graduation won’t miss out on opportunities. This ensures that Canada meets the urgent needs of our economy for today and tomorrow.
At present there are 3 Canadian workers for every retired Canadian, but by 2035, there will be only 2 workers for every retiree. Without immigrants it will be difficult to help support the needs of an aging population & younger Canadians will have to end up paying more per person to provide the same benefits.
These measures apply to all international students who are enrolled in a PGWP-eligible program, or whose program was already in progress in March 2020.