Canada Puts Two-Year Limit on Foreign Students Due to Housing and Healthcare Concerns

In a move to address housing and healthcare challenges, Canada has announced a cap on foreign student admissions for the next two years. The cap will lead to a 35% reduction in approved study permits. With over 800,000 foreign students in Canada in 2022, officials aim to maintain the system’s integrity and ensure a quality education for future students.

The cap, affecting diploma and undergraduate programs, won’t apply to permit renewals. Immigration Minister Marc Miller disclosed that around 360,000 undergraduate study permits will be approved, with allocations to provinces based on population and student intake. Provinces will then decide permit distribution to universities and colleges.

Starting September, work permits won’t be granted to graduates from public-private partnership model colleges, mainly in Ontario. This change aims to prevent under-resourced institutions from taking advantage of international students with high tuition fees.

This decision comes amid a housing crisis in Canada, where home prices average C$750,000 and rent has risen 22% in the last two years. Some attribute housing unaffordability to increased immigration, as construction struggles to keep up. The new measures signify a shift in Canada’s open immigration policy, causing concerns for universities and potential impact on the learning environment.

According to Universities Canada, the cap, while not affecting post-graduate students, may stress an already strained system. There are worries that these measures could deter students from choosing Canada for their studies. President David Farrar of McMaster University in Hamilton expressed concern that losing international students might lead to cuts in domestic student admissions due to financial impacts.

[Source: BBC News]

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