Monday, May 15, 2006 - the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, introduced a new bill in the House of Commons to reform the Citizenship Act. The plan is intended to streamline the foreign adoption process by amending bureaucratic hurdles that lengthen the time it takes to unite Canadian parents with their foreign-adopted children.

Foreign-trained doctors, nurses and other professionals will be offered a "fast-track" to credentials recognition in Quebec with the introduction of Bill 14.

Federal Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, the Honourable Monte Solberg, will address a National Business Symposium on June 15th. The discussion is expected to explore solutions to Canada's massive labour shortage. The gathering will be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

The Government of Canada has reduced the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) from C$975.00 to C$490.00 effective Wednesday, May 3, 2006.

The Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, has announced that effective April 27, 2006, foreign students enrolled in public post-secondary institutions can apply for off-campus work permits. The work permit is valid for the duration of their study permit.

According to Statistics Canada (Statscan), Alberta's population increased by five times the national average in the fourth quarter of 2005. The Prairie province has not seen growth of this magnitude since it struck oil in the late 1970s.

British Columbia (B.C.) wants as many temporary foreign workers as needed to fill the labour shortage affecting its booming construction industry.

The unemployment rate fell to 6.3 percent in March, the lowest it's been in decades. The number of jobs in Canada has increased by a whopping 330,000 (2.1 percent) during the last year, an amazing growth by anyone's measure.

A study commissioned by Quebec's immigration minister contends that the idea of a foreign-trained immigrant driving a taxi cab to make ends-meat is an overstated pretense.

Fox proposes that Mexican workers be able to work in Canada temporarily, a solution that borrows its concept from Canada's Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program.

The Ontario Construction Secretariat estimates that the province alone loses over 1.5 billion dollars in unpaid taxes and premiums annually to the underground immigrant economy. Amid deportation hearings, officials in Canada are wondering what to do with all these illegal workers.

In his first public address as Immigration Minister, Monte Solberg announced that a federal agency will be developed to respond to the needs of Canada's skilled immigrants. He also re-iterated his government's plan to reduce the immigrant landing fee by half.

Canada's labour crunch has it facing one of the most serious shortages of skilled workers in the industrial world. A recent Manpower inc. poll of Canadian small and enterprise-level business highlights the growing trend.

In Solberg's first public address as Minister, he is expected to speak on issues which "affect the successful integration of immigrants into the Canadian society". The meeting will focus on various topics including how Canada can better address foreign skill and credential recognition.