When looking for an opportunity for a bright future in a new country, Canada is always seen as one of the best options. Canada offers many fantastic opportunities for immigrants between the booming job market, publicly-funded healthcare, world-class education, safety, and its famously stable economy and political structure.
Statistics Canada has stated that over 300,000 people, originally from Pakistan, live in Canada. As Canada's population is shrinking and the industries in Canada are continuously and exponentially growing, the Federal Government of Canada is hugely open to an increase of skilled foreign workers in Canada as they can help to fill the gaps in the Canadian labor market.
As a result, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), the Canadian immigration authority, has created over 100 Canadian visa and immigration programs to facilitate immigration into Canada. However, due to this vast array of immigration options, knowing the best way to move to Canada from Pakistan can often be tricky. To help the process, we have compiled the best ways to get permanent residency or a Canada visa from Pakistan.
The 5 Best Ways to Move To Canada From Pakistan
There are many fantastic pathways to move to Canada from Pakistan. Some of these are temporary visas that can later be improved to permanent residency, and some are pathways to gain permanent residency directly.
The Express Entry System
Canada's Express Entry system is the most popular permanent residency system. The system was created in 2015 to help skilled workers and their families immigrate to Canada in as little as six months.
Applicants apply for the Express Entry system by creating an Express Entry profile on the IRCC's web portal. When creating this profile, they enter details such as:
- Education Level
- Work Experience
- Marital Status
- Language proficiency
- In English or French
- Links to Canada
The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) evaluates the applicant's details to create a CRS score. All CRS scores are entered into an Express Entry pool. Every two weeks, an Express Entry draw takes place where all applicants whose CRS score is higher than a specified number are presented with an Invitation To Apply (ITA) for permanent residence in Canada.
Applicants receiving ITAs have 60 days to submit valid documentation corroborating their Express Entry profile details and pay their application fees. After that, they are given permanent residency in as little as six months.
There are three specific programs under the Express Entry System.
- The Federal Skilled Worker Program
- This program is specifically for applicants who work in a professional occupation that usually requires a university degree.
- Examples include:
- Software Engineers
- The Federal Skilled Trades Program
- This program is specifically for skilled tradespeople with significant work experience in their trade or a qualification like a diploma.
- Examples include:
- The Canadian Experience Class
- This program is specifically for skilled who have already been living and working in Canada for the previous year.
Each of these programs has specific eligibility requirements that must be adhered to. However, the best way to improve your chances of immigration to Canada from Pakistan via Express Entry is to maximize your CRS score.
Provincial Nominee Programs
If you know which of Canada's provinces you want to move to, getting a Provincial Nomination via one of Canada's Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) may increase your chances of being fast-tracked to your life in Canada. 11 out of Canada's 13 provinces offer PNPs. Each PNP has its own set of eligibility criteria based on the specific needs of the province or territory. There are two ways to apply for a PNP.
The first and most popular option is to apply via the Express Entry web portal. When creating your Express Entry profile, you can indicate your interest in moving to a specific province. To do this, you must send off an Expression of Interest (EOI) for that province. If the provincial authority feels you would sufficiently benefit the province you're interested in, you will receive your nomination. A provincial nomination can add up to 600 points to your CRS score, guaranteeing an ITA at the next Express Entry draw.
The other option is to apply directly to the provincial authority. You can do this directly via the government website of your chosen province. This process may take longer, but you will not have to rely on the Express Entry draw system.
If you have family members who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents, you may be able to move to Canada from Pakistan via Canadian family sponsorship. Through this system, your partner or close relative can sponsor your move to Canada, provided they:
- Are over 18
- Are a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident
- Have sufficient funds to support you once you enter Canada from Pakistan
Several family sponsorship programs are based on your relationship with your sponsor. For example, there are programs for your spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner, parents and grandparents, and your spouse and children.
While this doesn't automatically result in permanent residency, getting a work permit is a great way to get a Canada visa from Pakistan, giving you enough time to live and work in Canada long enough to qualify for a permanent residence program like the Canadian Experience Class.
To get a work permit, you must have a valid job offer from a Canadian employer and aLabour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), proving your employer couldn't fill the vacancy with the current Canadian labour market. The job application process in Canada can be slightly different from that in Pakistan, so here's a handy guide on how to land a job in Canada.
Once you get your Canadian job offer, you can apply for your Canadian work permit. However, you may need help applying for your Canada visa from Pakistan or want to ensure your CV and job interview skills are up to Canadian standards. In that case, you could greatly benefit from using the expert help that our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) can provide.
Another fantastic way to move to Canada from Pakistan is to study at one of Canada's world-class universities and colleges. To study in Canada, you need a Canadian study permit. Here's an overview of how you can get a study permit for Canada.
Student Direct Stream (SDS)
A fantastic option to land a study permit in Canada as a Pakistani national is via the Student Direct Stream Program. The Student Direct Stream (SDS) is a program wherein international students from eligible countries in Africa, Asia, Central America, and South America can get a Canadian study permit in as little as 20 calendar days. Pakistan is on the list of eligible nations for the SDS. The SDS does, however have very specific requirements that all applicants must fulfill.
Learn more about the SDS and how to apply here.
While these are some of the most popular programs for Canadian immigration from Pakistan, these are far from the only options. Our RCICs can help evaluate you to help you find which visa or immigration program is best for you and provide you with the help and guidance you need to get through your application process quickly and easily.
Pakistani Immigration to Canada: A Growing Trend
Canada has long been a preferred destination for immigrants seeking better opportunities and a higher standard of living. Among the various immigrant groups, Pakistanis have steadily contributed to the multicultural fabric of Canada. Over the past few years, the number of Pakistanis immigrating to Canada has remarkably increased. According to the IRCCs monthly update report, Pakistan continues to be a major contributor to Canada’s increasing immigration numbers.
Temporary Residence (TR) Applications
In 2020, 25,600 TR applications from Pakistani nationals were finalized. This number experienced a significant boost in 2021, reaching 32,060 finalized applications. The trend continued to rise in 2022, with a remarkable 77,641 TR applications being finalized. This represents an annual average growth rate of 83.7%
As for the current year, 2023, the number of TR applications finalized for Pakistani immigrants stands at 44,312 for the first quarter. This figure indicates a substantial increase, suggesting a continued interest among Pakistanis in exploring temporary residency options in Canada.
Permanent Residency (PR) Issuance
The Canadian government offers pathways for individuals to transition from temporary to permanent residency status. In 2020, 5,137 Pakistani immigrants were granted PR, providing them with a stable foundation to build their lives in Canada. This number witnessed a notable surge in 2021, with 9,144 PRs issued to Pakistani nationals. The trend continued in 2022, as 12,988 PRs were granted to Pakistanis, representing an annual average growth rate of 60.2%.
For the first quarter of 2023, the number of PRs issued to Pakistani immigrants so far is 2,999. Although this figure represents data only up to the current year, it indicates a consistent trend of Pakistani immigrants seeking permanent residency in Canada.
As individuals settle into Canadian society and meet the requirements, they may choose to apply for Canadian citizenship. In 2020, 4,740 individuals of Pakistani origin were granted Canadian citizenship, solidifying their commitment to Canada. The following year, 5,552 Pakistanis became Canadian citizens, a slight increase from the previous year. In 2022, this number further rose to 15,204, signifying a significant surge in the number of Pakistanis becoming Canadian citizens. As a result, the annual average growth rate was a whopping 95.49%
In the first quarter of 2023, 3,253 individuals of Pakistani origin have obtained Canadian citizenship. Although this data is subject to change as the year progresses, it suggests a continuation of the upward trend in Pakistani immigrants embracing Canadian citizenship.
The statistics presented here clearly demonstrate the growing trend of Pakistani immigration to Canada. From increased TR applications being finalized to rising figures in PR issuances and citizenship grants, Pakistani immigrants are actively pursuing opportunities in Canada.
The attraction towards Canada as a destination for immigration can be attributed to various factors, including Canada's strong economy, diverse society, and inclusive policies that facilitate the integration of newcomers. As the year 2023 unfolds, it will be interesting to observe how the numbers evolve, further highlighting the enduring allure of Canada for Pakistani immigrants.
Why Canada is a Great Immigration Option for Pakistanis
Welcoming and Inclusive Society
Canada takes pride in its multicultural heritage, embracing people from all walks of life. For Pakistanis who seek a more tolerant and accepting environment, Canada provides a safe haven. Canadian society is renowned for its openness, respect for diversity, and promotion of equal rights. This inclusive mindset ensures that newcomers, including Pakistanis, can integrate smoothly into the fabric of Canadian society, fostering a sense of belonging.
Canada's thriving economy and diverse job market offer an abundance of opportunities for skilled professionals, entrepreneurs, and investors from Pakistan. The country boasts a robust infrastructure, a strong healthcare system, and excellent educational institutions, providing a conducive environment for professional growth and personal development. Canada's focus on innovation and technological advancements further creates avenues for Pakistanis to excel in various fields.
Education and Research
For Pakistani students aspiring to pursue higher education, Canada offers world-class universities and colleges renowned for their academic excellence and research opportunities. With a wide range of programs and scholarships available, Pakistani students can gain access to quality education in a multicultural environment, enhancing their skills and expanding their horizons. Moreover, Canadian credentials are recognized globally, opening doors to international career prospects.
Social Benefits and Healthcare
Canada's social welfare system ensures that individuals have access to essential healthcare services, including comprehensive medical coverage, which can alleviate concerns about healthcare expenses. The Canadian government also provides support programs, such as child benefits, unemployment insurance, and affordable housing initiatives, aimed at helping newcomers settle in and establish a comfortable life for themselves and their families.
Safety and Security
Canada consistently ranks among the safest countries in the world, offering a peaceful and secure environment for individuals and families. Canadians take pride in their commitment to human rights, social justice, and the rule of law. Pakistanis seeking a stable and secure future will find solace in Canada's low crime rates, well-functioning legal system, and strong social infrastructure.
Canada offers a host of wonderful attributes that make it a fantastic place to move to. But what are these attributes, and why do they make Canada such an attractive immigration option? Below, this video breaks down five fantastic reasons you would want to be part of the wave of immigration to Canada from Pakistan.
Increase Your Chances of Permanent Residency
Now that you have a clear understanding of the options available, it's time to ensure you're eligible for Canada. While all Canadian immigration programs have different eligibility criteria, there are certain basic factors you need to fulfill to be admissible to Canada and certain factors that can massively improve your chances of being eligible for your chosen program.
To be admissible to Canada, you must:
- Have a clean criminal record (usually certified by police certificates),
- Be in good enough medical health that you won't:
- be a danger to public health and safety, or
- put unnecessary stress on the Canadian public healthcare system
- Have sufficient funds to support yourself in Canada and fund a flight home.
- Ensure all your documents are valid and up-to-date and represent you correctly.
Certain factors that can massively improve your eligibility to your chosen program, job or institution are:
- A high Canadian Language Benchmark score
- A valid Canadian job offer
- Tertiary qualifications (validated with an Educational Credential Assessment)
Is Canada a Good Place for Pakistani Nationals to Move?
Yes. Canada is hugely welcoming to people worldwide and already has large Pakistani communities in cities like Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. Every year there are numerous festivals celebrating Pakistani culture in Vancouver and Toronto.
Is Canada Easy to Move to as a Pakistani National?
This naturally depends on your eligibility and your immigration program. However, the process can be made far easier if you work with a certified immigration expert who has been through the immigration process before.
What is the fastest way to move to Canada?
While this also naturally depends on your eligibility, here is a handy breakdown of the fastest ways to move to Canada from Pakistan.