#COVID19 #Immigration effects: March 2021

My regular monthly update. A few changes from earlier versions. 

Slides now have one-year and two-year comparisons, highlighting change from 2019 pre-COVID baseline as well as well as post-COVID 2020. Citizenship application numbers include first quarter 2021. 

Slide 3 summarizes the changes by program. 

In terms of trends and observations, the overall picture is that of a return to the 2019 baseline, partially for Permanent Residents but close to normal for IMP, TFWP and study permits except where noted below. No significant recovery in citizenship numbers. 

  • While still lower than 2019 baseline, PR admissions are recovering from their 2020 low. First quarter numbers of 70,000 suggest 280,000 for 2021 but government changes (lowering of Express Entry minimum score, Temporary resident to permanent resident pathway program, likely others to come) will result in higher numbers. 
  • TR to Permanent Residents transition continues to remain at about half of total Permanent Residents numbers. 
  • TRs, both IMP and TFWP, have all increased compared to 2019 save for IMP/Agreements.and TFWP/Caregivers. Most dramatic increase is with respect to “Other IMP Participants” which largely reflects open work permits for Hong Kong residents with HKSAR and BNO passports. 
  • Study permit holders have increased from the 2019 baseline. 
  • Asylum claimants remain significantly lower given border closures and travel restrictions. 
  • Citizenship numbers remain much lower than the 2019 baseline, reflecting the partial reopening and move to online testing and ceremonies. 
  • Visitor visas remain largely closed 

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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