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Canada pledges to speed up immigration system (Victoria)

Officials in Canada are looking at new ways to make the immigration system more flexible, fast and fair and also speeding up citizenship decisions by clearing dormant cases.

Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander said that the application process has been bogged down by applicants not taking the process seriously.

‘We are continuing to look at all reasonable options to make Canada’s already generous immigration system even more flexible, fast and fair. There will be moves to cut waiting times for new applicants who are committed to contributing to Canada’s long term growth and prosperity,’ said Alexander in a statement.

‘The application process has, for too long, been bogged down by persons who unnecessarily delay the process for everyone else by not taking the process seriously. We are committed to ensuring that those who play by the rules and work in good faith to become Canadian citizens will not have to wait in line behind people who fail to attend their citizenship test or interview, or who fail to submit a residence questionnaire,’ he explained.

Currently there is also a cap on applications for federal skilled worker visas which came into force in May and will last until April Protected content . It means that Citizenship and Immigration Canada will only consider federal skilled worker (FSW) applications from people who meet certain criteria.

This includes having at least one year of continuous and paid, full time or an equal amount in part time work experience in a single occupation and who match the list of 24 eligible occupations.

Applicants must also have a valid offer of arranged employment and meet the minimum language threshold with approved language test results, and submit a Canadian educational credential or foreign credential and an assessment of their foreign education from an approved agency.

‘We remain committed to eliminating backlogs and continuing to enhance the value of Canadian citizenship,’ Alexander added.

The cap for FSW applications currently stands at 5,000 with no more than Protected content per eligible occupation being considered for processing by 30 April Protected content .

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