The honorable Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Marco E. L. Mendicino, on October 27 declared that French-speaking and bilingual applicants will receive extra points under the Express Entry scheme. Express Entry is an online system used to handle applications for permanent residency for qualified skilled workers.
This move would help meet the government’s adherence to achieving the target of 4.4% of Francophone immigrant admissions outside Quebec in the next three years.
The new changes would increase the existing number of points for French-speaking candidates from 15 to 25. Whereas for bilingual candidates points would increase from 30 to 50.
Although there has been an increase in French-speaking immigration to Canada outside Quebec, recent statistics show that current selection tools would not be adequate to meet the 4.4% goal by 2023.
Granting additional points to candidates through Express Entry with good French language skills could improve French-speaking immigrant admissions to the 4.4% target by 2023.
Progress in achieving this goal would be helped by the imminent easing of travel constraints related to the global pandemic.
The percentage of French-speaking immigrants admitted to Canada outside Quebec increased in 2019 by 2.82 percent. The changes also observed in the percentage of invited French speakers to apply annually. In 2019, the proportion hit 5.6 percent, up from 4.5% in 2018.
The Quebec province sets its own level of immigration under the Canada-Quebec Accord. From 2003 to 2019, in areas outside Quebec, more than 60,000 French-speaking immigrants were welcomed to Canada. In 2019 alone about 8645 immigrants were welcomed.
Under the 2018-2023 Action Plan for Official Languages, IRCC is investing $40.8 million over 5 years to help the consolidation and horizontal policy implementation of a Francophone integration pathway.