The Canadian province of Nova Scotia has been granted an additional 300 spaces for its Nova Scotia Nominee Program (NSNP), bringing the total annual allocation cap for the NSNP to 1,350. The news follows extensive lobbying of the federal government by the government of Nova Scotia.

“I get it, I get it,” said Federal Immigration Minister John McCallum during a speech to the Halifax Chamber of Commerce in Nova Scotia. “And I agreed on the 300 after a couple of weekend conversations with the premier [Stephen McNeil, Premier of Nova Scotia].”

"Nova Scotia, because of its aging population, is desperate for immigrants . . . So what we are hoping to do in the time between now and the fall is to hold these discussions, for me to be able to generate large numbers of immigrants overall and for me to be able to agree to Nova Scotia to receive significantly more . . But we're not there yet, we're in the early stages."

Last September, Nova Scotia successfully lobbied the federal government for a similar increase in its 2015 allocation, which also ended up being set at 1,350. The new Liberal government in Ottawa had originally set the NSNP cap for 2016 at 1,050, but both parties have now agreed to a return to the 1,350 figure.

"We're certainly pleased that he [McCallum] recognized that the 300 bump that we got last year shouldn't have been a one-time bump," said Premier Stephen McNeil.

"There's a commitment by them to recognize the work that Nova Scotians have been doing in and around retention and allowing us to lead in Atlantic Canada to make sure that immigrants who arrive in Atlantic Canada stay here, not just here but in our sister provinces.

“But there’s no question we need more people . . . It’s my fundamental belief the cap should be lifted and allow us as a region, as a province to go forward.”

To learn more more about the Nova Scotia Nominee Program, click here.