Jonathan Arias - 31 March, 2017
The government of New Brunswick and the federal government of Canada have signed a new agreement, the Canada-New Brunswick Immigration Agreement. The deal aims to help New Brunswick address labour shortages and grow its population.
The signing of the agreement took place in Moncton, New Brunswick, during the first Forum on Francophone Immigration between federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for immigration and for the Canadian Francophonie.
The agreement supports New Brunswick in its goal to help fill labour shortages and grow its population by welcoming more immigrants. An annex to the agreement, “French-Speaking Immigrants,” is the first of its kind. It outlines how Canada and New Brunswick will work together to attract and retain French-speaking immigrants, and bring in more skilled workers. The French-Speaking Immigrants annex aims to explore opportunities to bring in more French-speaking immigrants and to help New Brunswick connect these immigrants with francophone communities, as well as promote French integration services.
Around one-third of New Brunswick residents are francophone, the highest proportion of any province except Quebec.
Interestingly, news of this agreement came just hours after Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that changes to the federal Express Entry immigration selection system would come into effect this coming June. Among these changes will be additional points for candidates with French skills.
The agreement — which aligns with the Atlantic Growth Strategy, including the recently-launched Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program — will guide the relationship on immigration between Canada and New Brunswick for the next five years. According to IRCC, it is the first comprehensive bilateral agreement on immigration between Canada and New Brunswick.
“I am pleased that Canada and New Brunswick have signed the first Canada-New Brunswick Immigration Agreement, which includes a focus on francophone immigration. We anticipate that this agreement will contribute to New Brunswick’s efforts to grow its francophone communities and meet its francophone immigration targets. I look forward to continuing a strong, collaborative relationship with New Brunswick under this new partnership in support of the province’s economic priorities," said Ahmed Hussen, Canada's Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, who present in Moncton to sign the agreement.
Potential economic immigrants to New Brunswick may arrive through a number of channels, including: