Prime Minister Stephen Harper's recent cabinet shuffle seeks to encourage the interaction between immigration and human resources.

With the Conservative government's recent cabinet reorganization, the Right Honourable Monte Solberg's term of office as the Canadian federal Minister of Immigration has ended. Prime Minister Harper has repositioned him to the post of Minister of Human Resources and Social Development Canada (ESDC). The former Minister of ESDC, the Right Honourable Diane Finley, will take over from Solberg as the new Immigration Minister.

In keeping with the federal government's mandate to facilitate the entry of foreign workers to Canada, the reorganization of these departments is methodical and calculated. Both ministers will bring the perspective gained from their former roles to build on their existing relationship.

Canadian immigration attorney David Cohen, of the law firm of Campbell Cohen is optimistic about the minister swap, calling it "implicit recognition by the federal government that there must be a partnership between the two departments to bring foreign workers to Canada more efficiently." Working together, the Immigration Department and ESDC are poised to implement policies to facilitate the influx of foreign skilled workers that is needed by many sectors of the Canadian economy.

The role reversal translates to a good fit for both ministers. Finley is a native of Ontario, the beacon province for newly arrived immigrants. Solberg hails from Alberta, the area where employers are most hard-pressed to find qualified employees.

This past year, the Department of Immigration and ESDC have been cooperating extensively to create programs that improve the situation for both domestic employers and immigrant workers seeking permanent residency in Canada. Solberg and Finley will soon have experience dealing directly with both stakeholder groups.

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