OTTAWA, March 29 (UPI) -- The Canadian government proposes taking in 2,500 more refugees per year as part of legislative reform, the immigration minister said in Ottawa Monday.
As many as 12,000 refugees are now allowed into Canada each year and the new proposal to be introduced in Parliament this week would increase the number over a period of about five years, the Canwest News Service reported.
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney estimated the additional cost at $90 million over five years.
"We know that we can't help everyone, but what we can do is introduce balanced reforms to our refugee system that will allow us to expand our refugee resettlement programs to provide protection to more people," Kenney said.
The minister said priority would be given to people the United Nations designated as legitimate refugees, the report said. There are more than 10 million U.N.-designated refugees living in camps internationally, Canwest said.