COVID-19 Has Not Changed People’s Interest In Immigrating To Canada

The economic impacts of coronavirus pandemic have largely not changed people’s plans or interest of immigrating to Canada. In most cases, potential immigrants still expect that Canada will suffer less economic hardship than their own country.

Of the 4,615 respondents who responded to a recent survey from World Education Services (WES), thirty-eight per cents say they are more interested in immigrating to Canada, fifty-seven per cents say that the pandemic does not impact their interest, and five per cents say they are less interested.

Researcher Joan Atlin stated she was surprised to see such a small number of people who were less interested in immigrating to Canada.

“The research was carried out in April, so quite early in the pandemic, and I was expecting that number to be potentially a little bit higher,” Atlin said, “It was very encouraging to see.”

The survey was carried out by WES from April 15 to 21 in an effort to know how coronavirus pandemic affected the intentions of prospective immigrants to Canada.

The non-profit credential evaluation provider (WES) collected survey results from their clients, most of whom are in the pre-arrival stage and are on track to migrate to Canada.

All respondents were outside of Canada at the time the survey was carried out. More than fifty per cents of the people surveyed from the Philippines (64%), China (64%), and Nigeria (58%) said they are more interested in immigrating to Canada as a result of coronavirus.

There was basically no impact on the desire to immigrate to Canada for respondents from the U.K. (59%), the U.S. (57%), Pakistan (58%), India (64%), and France (73%).

Just over half of the respondents, fifty-two per cents, do not expect the pandemic to impact their ability to pay for the costs of immigrating to Canada; but, about thirty-five per cents, do expect it to negatively impact their ability to pay the costs.

More than a third, thirty-nine per cents, say that personal and family economic hardships would make them more interested in immigrating to Canada.

Most are still very much interested despite worsening job prospects. The loss of job opportunities in a respondent’s occupation in Canada had the largest impact on attitudes toward the move, with thirty-one per cents saying it would make them less interested to immigrate to Canada. Even so, the majority, forty-six per cents, said job loss would not affect them.

Most report that they would not be affected by immigration obstacles such as increases in IRCC processing times, travel restrictions or a reduction in immigration targets.

The risk of contracting coronavirus was the biggest hurdle with thirty-six per cents reporting they would be less interested in coming to Canada, however, forty-two pe cents still reported that it would not impact their interest.

Just over a third, thirty-five per cents, of respondents are considering delaying immigration to Canada to a future date, and forty-twp per cents said they were unlikely to delay. The biggest reason for the delay was the risk of contracting the novel coronavirus.

WES is conducting at least two more surveys on this topic. One is scheduled to hold this month and another is scheduled for August.