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StudyCanada breaks another record, issues 450,000 study permits

Canada breaks another record, issues 450,000 study permits

In 2021, Canada issued approximately 450,000 new study permits. It was a remarkable achievement that considerably surpassed the previous all-time record set in 2019.
Prior to the pandemic, just over 400,000 new study permits were issued in Canada. That number dropped to around 255,000 in 2020. In comparison to 2015, the number for last year was more than doubled.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) publish monthly data on new study permits issued by the country. These include study permits given to new students coming to Canada and foreign nationals who are already living in Canada.

Unsurprisingly, over 200,000 study permits were issued in July and August. These months are just before the start of the 2021-22 academic year and thus saw the newest study permits.

IRCC also publishes year-end data in the first quarter of each new calendar year. It is usually a snapshot of all students who had a valid study permit by December 31st. With the influx of new study permits, Canada’s international student population has nearly recovered to pre-pandemic levels. Canada had almost 622,000 international students as of December 31st. Its international student population peaked at over 640,000 in 2019, before dropping to around 530,000 in 2020 due to the epidemic.

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Canada imposed travel restrictions at the start of the pandemic in March 2020, affecting many potential students who had yet to reach the country. Canada removed these restrictions in October 2020, allowing the country’s international student population to rebound. This explains why Canada had a record-breaking number of new international students arrive last year. Last year’s high number of study permits was mostly because of a double group of student arrivals: those who wanted to come to Canada in 2020 but couldn’t because of the pandemic, and those who planned to start their studies in Canada in 2021.

International students say they are drawn to Canada for a variety of reasons, including the excellent level of education, multiculturalism, and safety, among others. In comparison to other nations with big international student populations, such as the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom, studying in Canada can be more economical. Another significant advantage of studying in Canada is that international students are permitted to work during their studies, allowing them to support themselves financially while also gaining valuable work experience.

The relaxation of Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) requirements in Canada was undoubtedly an effective factor in the recovery of international students. Prior to the pandemic, IRCC did not allow students under distance learning to be eligible for PGWP. However, they have temporarily relaxed this restriction until August 31, 2022, to assist those who choose to continue their studies in Canada despite the pandemic.

PGWPs are available to international students who complete their studies at a Canadian Designated Learning Institution (DLI). Universities, colleges, and other post-secondary institutions that have been approved by the government to accept international students are known as DLIs. The PGWP is highly sought after because it allows international graduates to earn the Canadian work experience that they generally require in order to be eligible to apply for permanent residency.

IRCC also offers an expedited pathway for study permits to residents of 14 countries, the largest of which are India, China, the Philippines, Pakistan, Vietnam, Morocco, Senegal, Brazil, Columbia, and Peru. Students from these countries can apply through the Student Direct Stream (SDS) and obtain a study permit in just three weeks.

Other than that, many immigration schemes in Canada reward candidates who have studied in the country. Students can earn extra points for Canadian study experience in Express Entry. A variety of other streams by IRCC, provinces and territories either offer the same reward or are only available to international graduates. The reason behind this is that, according to research by the Canadian government, international graduates show great labour market outcomes after gaining permanent residence in the country.

India continues to be the most important source country of international students in Canada. It accounts for about a third of all foreign students. China is still in second place, with France in third. India’s big proportion can be explained in part by the fact that it has the world’s second-largest English-speaking population and a sizable middle class.

The top 10 international student source countries, as per the number of study permit holders on December 31, 2021, are:

  1. India: 217,410
  2. China: 105,265
  3. France: 26,630
  4. Iran: 16,900
  5. Vietnam: 16,285
  6. South Korea: 15,805
  7. The Philippines: 15,545
  8. The United States: 14,325
  9. Nigeria: 13,745
  10. Mexico: 11,550
Canadian Visa News
Canadian Visa News
Canadian Visa News is the immigration news network that keeps you updated with all the immigration updates. We are always connected to the Canadian immigration policies, visa updates, and all the official immigration sources.

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