Every year, hundreds of thousands of Indian students make a life-altering decision. They incur significant debts, bid farewell to their parents and homeland, and set their sights on Canada, driven by a shared dream: securing a study visa that will pave their way to the much-coveted Canadian permanent residency.
It’s a decision that carries immense financial and emotional weight, fueled by the promise of a brighter future. However, a report is casting a shadow of doubt over this dream, cautioning international students that the path to Canadian permanent residency may be far more challenging than they’ve been led to believe.
This report, authored by Senators Ratna Omidvar, Hassan Yussuff, and Yuen Pau Woo, underscores the unsettling reality faced by international students who arrive in Canada buoyed by promises of an imminent permanent residency status. Many of these students, influenced by misleading assurances from education consultants, arrive with the conviction that their educational journey is a guaranteed ticket to secure permanent residency. Yet, this optimism doesn’t align with the intricate and fiercely competitive landscape of Canada’s permanent residency system.
While studying in Canada can bolster their prospects, it doesn’t promise a straightforward path. The report reveals a disconcerting statistic: since 2000, only 30 percent of international students who came to Canada have successfully achieved permanent residency within a decade of their arrival. This revelation should serve as a wake-up call for aspiring Indian international students and their parents.
The report not only calls for federal intervention to combat the misinformation perpetuated by education consultants but also points to the unintentional role played by the Canadian government in fostering these inflated hopes among international students.
“While the Canadian government is being honest in highlighting the immigration advantages of studying in Canada, it can perhaps do more to be forthright about the highly competitive nature of the permanent residence application process,” the report says.
International students drive unprecedented population growth in Canada
Canada’s population has experienced an unprecedented surge, growing at a rate not witnessed in nearly seven decades, with 1.2 million migrants, a substantial portion being international students, arriving in the country over the past year. Data from Statistics Canada reveals that on July 1, the nation’s population reached approximately 40.1 million, marking a remarkable 3% increase. This surge represents the most significant 12-month growth since 1957, making Canada the fastest-growing country in the Western world in terms of population. This trend is occurring at a time when numerous developed nations are grappling with population declines.
In the past year, Canada rolled out the welcome mat for 469,000 permanent residents and a whopping 700,000 temporary residents, including students. And while the Canadian government has been beating the drum for high immigration as an economic booster, there’s some grumbling in the ranks. The influx of newcomers is cranking up demand for housing, and that’s pushing prices through the roof. Economists and experts are pointing fingers at Ottawa’s overdrive immigration strategy as a likely culprit for these surging living costs, and some critics are saying the system is veering out of control.
Now, while everyone’s making a beeline for Canada, ever wondered where Canadians themselves are flocking to within our borders? A look at the interprovincial migration data shows Alberta standing tall as the go-to place for Canucks looking to swap provinces. Alberta grew at a blistering four percent, adding more than 184,000 folks over the past year, including a net gain of 56,000 from other provinces.
It’s all about jobs and affordability. The energy-rich province is basking in the glow of rebounding oil prices and relatively cheaper housing. But don’t get too comfy; with the way things are going, that affordability might not last forever.
First published on: 01-10-2023 at 15:04 IST