The Agreement for Canada-Alberta Cooperation on Immigration provides Alberta with greater control over immigration to the province, facilitating the selection and retention of newcomers to fill gaps in the labour market.
Signed by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the Alberta Minister of Employment, Immigration, and Industry, and the Premier of Alberta, the new agreement addresses Alberta’s labour force needs and the needs of newcomers to the province.
The implications of the Agreement for Canada-Alberta Cooperation on Immigration are:
- There will no longer be a limit on the number of immigrants that Alberta can nominate for Canadian Permanent Residency (under the Provincial Nomination Program), allowing the province to select and retain newcomers with skills that are in demand.
- The agreement will develop mechanisms to make it easier and quicker to get the foreign workers needed to meet growing labour force demands.
- A pilot project will be launched, aimed at fast-tracking the entry of foreign health care professionals.
- The Government of Canada has committed to “fair and ongoing” funding for immigrant settlement services in Alberta and recognizes the importance of involving community stakeholders in developing programs and services to help newcomers integrate into Alberta society and the Alberta work force.
Canadian immigration Attorney David Cohen, of the law firm of Campbell Cohen explains that as provinces are becoming increasingly involved in immigration matters, the Provincial Nomination Programs are the more attractive and efficient routes to Canadian Permanent Residency. “Clearly there is an abundance of job positions to be filled in Alberta and the booming provincial economy cannot afford to waste time searching for workers. The message from immigration authorities is loud and clear: Find yourself a job offer in Alberta and the federal and provincial governments will help you get to your new employer and your new life in Canada as soon as possible.”