The Government of Canada has introduced a new Economic Immigration Pilot which will run for five years. It will help rural and northern communities located in Western Canada Ontario, and three territories of Canada for attracting and retaining skilled foreign workers.
The Rural and Northern Pilot is based on the needs of the community and is inspired by the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program which is running since 2017. It leads to the permanent residence for overseas workers of different skills in eligible communities. It has an aim to benefit these provinces and territories:
- British Columbia
- Northwest Territories
IRCC has also specified the norms for eligible communities. These can be a city having the population of 50,000 or below and located 75 kilometers from the core of any metropolitan area of 100,000. Another is the city having a population of 200,000 that is remote as per classification.
Ways of operating
Moreover, similar to the Atlantic Immigration Pilot, the new Rural and Northern Pilot operates alongside Provincial Nominee Programs of Canada.
The AIPP is based on the needs of the employer and works for the businesses in the provinces of Atlantic Canada. These are New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI and Newfoundland and Labrador for hiring overseas workers for such positions which they cannot fill up locally.
In 2018, the AIPP allowed the endorsement of 2,500 foreign workers and global students in four participating provinces for permanent residence. IRCC has also not specified any quota for this pilot.
Measure to serve the communities
Ahmed Hussen, Immigration Minister, Canada said that with the creation of an immigration pilot, specifically aimed at rural and northern communities, people across the country, can share the benefits of immigration. Bernadette Jordan, Rural Development Minister of Canada, said that the approach of focus on community is essential here. The Pilot aims to serve the economic development of small communities through testing the new, approaches of focus on community. Additionally, this will address the diverse needs of the labor market.
Communities have a March 1 deadline to apply
Presently IRCC is seeking applications from communities in the provinces and territories identified so far for participating in the pilot. All interested communities have to work in cooperation with a local economic development organization for submitting the application. They have also to meet the eligibility criteria of the pilot. They also have to signify the ways in which immigration will answer local priorities for economic development. These communities in the Rural and Northern Pilot have to express regarding the job opportunities available to the immigrants. They also need to actively involve and match immigration candidates to these jobs.
The responsibility of the communities
IRCC has also clearly specified that the local community and development organization will have the responsibility to recruit and assess able immigration candidates depending on job openings and local economic needs.
Additionally, they can recommend selection of candidates for PR. After March 1, 2019, and the selection of communities will be over and the pilot will commence in the spring.
Information regarding the immigration process for overseas workers through this Pilot will be announced in the future.
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