Canada reduces visa processing time for Pakistani nationals to 60 days


ISLAMABAD, May 05 (DNA): The government of Canada has decided to
considerably reduce the duration of processing time for visas of
Pakistani nationals.

Canada’s Minister for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Sean Fraser
has announced that the visa processing time for Pakistani nationals has
now been reduced from 802 days to just 60 days.

The Canadian minister promised that visa processing time would be
further reduced to one month. He said that now Pakistani citizens will
be able to get a visa to Canada in 60 days instead of 802 days.
“Currently, a complete TRV [Temporary Resident Visa] application from
Pakistan will be processed in 60 days, and we expect to hit 30 days in
the near future,” Sean Fraser tweeted.

Last year, Canada announced that it will boost its immigration targets,
hoping to welcome a record number of newcomers in order to address a
worker shortage in the country.

A large chunk of the population is heading into retirement, according to
recently released census data, with one in seven people in Canada
between the ages of 55 and 64 years old.

The website shows 802 days because the Canadian immigration ministry was
processing older applications from when borders were closed due to the
pandemic. “We’ve reduced the backlog for Pakistani TRVs significantly,
from 55K [fifty-five thousand] to less than 15K [fifteen thousand],”
said Fraser. He added that the country was also investing in a new
processing centre in Islamabad to boost “processing and interview
capacity” in the Indo-Pac region.

In 2021, Canada welcomed over 405,000 immigrants, the most ever in a
single year.

By 2025, the goal is for more than 60 percent of the total admissions
are to be economic migrants, Fraser said last year. Canada also aims to
reunite more families with members abroad faster, but take in slightly
fewer refugees.

It may be mentioned here that last month Canadian High Commissioner to
Pakistan Leslie Scanlon had assured Commerce Minister Syed Naveed Qamar
that the Canadian government is working for further facilitation and
speeding up the visa process for the Pakistani business community.

The envoy had called on the commerce minister to discuss ways to
strengthen the trade ties between the two countries where the minister
urged for facilitation in the issuance of visas to the business
community for participation in exhibitions and other business events,
especially for upcoming exhibitions in Canada like SIAL Canada, the
largest food innovation trade show in North America.

The minister had also appreciated the upcoming Canadian General
Preferential Tariff (GPT+) programme for developing countries and
expressed hope that launching of GPT+ Program in Pakistan would be more
beneficial to new proposed sectors such as apparel and footwear. He
hoped that Canada will also consider including more sectors of textiles
in the proposed scheme. The minister also appreciated that Pakistani
exports to Canada were higher than its imports, with a trade surplus in
Pakistan’s favour.