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We have good news for all Start-Up Visa (SUV) applicants currently waiting for their Permanent Resident (PR) visa for Canada, and the people about to submit their applications: The Federal government of Canada just announced this week that they would significantly increase the number of SUV PR visas in the coming three (03) years!


  • In December 2021, Canada had announced an extra financing of about CAD 80 million to address the backlog at Immigration Canada.
  • In the course of 2022, the growing popularity of the Startup Visa program kept growing at a fast pace of about 1,000 applications per month, hence the backlog in this category kept increasing significantly despite the extra financing.
【2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan】

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada released details on the Government of Canada’s Immigration Levels Plan for 2023-2025.

Canada aims to welcome 465,000 new permanent residents in 2023,
485,000 in 2024 and
500,000 in 2025.

2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan

【Supplementary Information for the 2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan】


  1. Includes the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, and Canadian Experience Class.
  2. Includes the time-limited temporary public policies for temporary resident to permanent resident pathways, with all admissions anticipated by the end of 2023.
  3. Includes the Start-up Visa Program and the Self-employed Persons Program.
  4. Admissions under the Municipal Nominee Program will be included within this category, following program launch.
  5. Includes admissions in the Home Child-Care Provider Pilot and the Home Support Worker Pilot. Applications received under the legacy caregiver pilots and through the interim pathway will be processed to completion. Some admissions in this category are destined for Quebec.
  6. Under the Canada-Quebec Accord, Quebec has full responsibility for the selection of immigrants destined to Quebec, with the exception of the family class and protected persons.
  7. Includes the stream for human rights defenders in need of protection, including women, journalists, and LGBTQ2 people.
  8. Includes admissions from Canada’s response to the situation in Afghanistan.
  9. Includes admissions of persons selected on humanitarian and compassionate grounds, for reasons of public policy, and in the permit holder class. This also includes some admissions from Canada’s response to the situation in Afghanistan.
  10. Notional targets and ranges for 2024 and 2025 will be confirmed or adjusted by November 1 of each year.
  11. Program and category specific ranges do not total to the overall ranges.
  12. The Government of Canada set an objective to increase Francophone immigration to reach a target of 4.4% French-speaking immigrants outside Quebec by 2023. This range indicates how many admissions within the federal levels plan would be necessary to meet that target in 2023, based on the overall ranges for admissions outside of Quebec. Once Quebec tables its 2023 immigration levels plan, this range may require updating.


[Targets for 2023, 2024 and 2025 of SUV applicants]

In its desire to address the backlog and to illustrate their commitment that “Canada is open for business” with the SUV program in this post COVID era, the government announced that they would select a significantly higher number of SUV applicants.


To be specific, let me provide a bit of background information: Canada is accepting a pre-determined number of applications in every category, every year. For each category, Canada has a minimum number of applications they wish to approve, a maximum number, and in between: the actual “soft target”.


Below is the summary of the current year target for the category of SUV applicants, and the just announced targets for 2023, 2024 and 2025:

2022: 1,500 Target

  • Minimum target to reach: 1,000
  • Maximum target not to exceed: 2,000

Newly Announced:

2023: 3,500 Target

  • Minimum target to reach: 2,350
  • Maximum target not to exceed: 4,000

2024: 5,000 Target

  • Minimum target to reach: 3,500
  • Maximum target not to exceed: 7,000

2025: 6,000 Target

  • Minimum target to reach: 4,000
  • Maximum target not to exceed: 8,000
[Impact of this New Targets for 2023, 2024 and 2025 of SUV applicants]

By multiplying by 2 to 4 to the number of applicants in the coming 3 years, the processing times will be reduced significantly. With an approximate current backlog of about 12,000 applications, it is reasonable to believe that processing times may be reduced from the current 32 month to about 2 years.


Let it be reminded that for applicants who still consider such time frames too long because of the nature of Start-up companies, the possibility to apply for a Work Permit (and obtain this WP in about 3 to 12 months) still exist for applicants that are considered “essential” members of the Start-Up, and declared as such in the Letter of support (LOS).


Simard & Associates brings together a team of experienced immigration lawyers and consultants team with years of experience in the industry and strong multi-dimensional channels to help you succeed in your immigration journey. Stay tuned to Simard & Associates for more information on immigration life abroad. If you are interested, please feel free to contact us.