of the most common questions in the Canadian immigration application process
is, “How long will it take for my Permanent
Resident Visa to be issued?” The answers provided by Citizenship and Immigration Canada
(CIC) are widely variable and based on historic information.
It is difficult for CIC to provide future
processing times due to the annual variations in the number of applications in every
immigration category and at each of the many overseas Canadian Immigration Visa
What CIC does provide as more concrete
indicators of application processing activity, is the annual targets for each Canadian Visa
Office. Included in these targets are Economic and Non-Economic sub-targets. The Economic
category comprises skilled workers, investor immigrants, entrepreneurs, and
provincially-selected applicants. The Non-Economic category is made up of spouses and
dependants, parents and grandparents, refugees and humanitarian cases. The annual assignment
of targets for each Canadian Immigration Visa Office is among the most important annual
decisions that CIC undertakes.
In 2007, CIC aims to welcome somewhere
between 225,000 and 265,000 new Canadian Permanent Residents. Of those, 66% will be economic
immigrants, and will 33% be non-economic immigrants.
Highlights from the CIC 2007 targets by
Damascus will continue to be the leader in
the number of Canadian Immigration Visas issued in the region with 10,190, up three per cent
from last year. The most prominent increase in the region is at the Rabat visa office, where
the number of visas issued in 2007 will be up by 46 per cent since last year to 4,315. Rabat
will have the highest economic to non-economic ratio in the region at 3.71. Nairobi will be
concentrating on non-economic immigrants, issuing visas to 2,300 refugees, the largest number
of any Canadian visa office.
Though the strongest growers since 2006
will be Taipei and Kuala Lumpur (at 33% and 17% respectively), New Delhi remains the
front-runner at 22,380 visas to be issued. Next in line are Hong Kong and Manila, Manila
being the visa office in the region where most applicants will take advantage of
provincially-sponsored and live-in caregiver programs. Seoul and Taipei will have very strong
economic to non-economic ratios at 10.51 and 8.73 respectively.
The region with the highest economic to
non-economic ratio (at 4.12); London, Berlin, Paris, and Bucharest will be the strongest
concentrations of economic immigrants with 7 or 8 economic visas issued for every
non-economic. Vienna will have the largest growth in the region at 27 per cent, mainly due to
non-economic immigrants. Paris, second in the number of visas to be issued after London, will
issue 9,000 visas under the economic sub-category of provincially-sponsored immigrants,
mainly due to immigration to Quebec.
Far and away the leader
in this region, Buffalo, U.S.A. will issue 36,075 Canadian Permanent Resident
Visas this year, 8,000 of which
will be under the economic sub-category of provincially-sponsored programs. The Buffalo visa
office's economic to non-economic ratio will be 9.09. The targets for Sao Paulo, Kingston,
and Port of Spain will have the largest increases at 44%, 38%, and 26% respectively, Sao
Paulo being the only one in which the majority will be for economic immigrants. Bogota will
issue 1,550 refugee visas to Canada.
Though the CIC targets do not provide
estimated waiting times for visa applications to be processed, the regional and global trends
are useful indicators of what Canadian Visa Offices around the world are working
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